David Sleper



Professor Emeritus

Plant Science & Technology


BS, Agronomy, Iowa State University
MS, Plant Breeding, Iowa State University
PhD, Plant Breeding and Genetics, University of Wisconsin at Madison


Dave Sleper joined the University of Missouri on October 1, 1974 and held the rank of professor for approximately 26 years. Dave’s research focus was on the breeding and genetics of soybean. His primary objectives included breeding for resistance to the soybean cyst nematode, Phytophthora rot, and other biotic and abiotic stresses. His program emphasized identifying new sources of resistance and mapping QTLs for resistance to the soybean cyst nematode. It also emphasized the breeding and genetics of modifying oil and protein in soybean.

Sleper is renowned in his field and served as President to the Crop Science Society of America (CSSA) in 2000 and the American Association of Agronomy (ASA) in 2006. As a passionate teacher, he taught one or more courses in plant breeding each year during over his entire career. He is coauthor of “Breeding Field Crops” the most successful undergraduate text in the world on plant breeding. His retirement from Mizzou was effective in the fall of 2010 and he received emeritus faculty status soon after.