Congratulations to Professor Dabing Zhang, A/Professor Matthew Tucker, A/Professor Stuart Roy and Professor Vladimir Jiranek from the School of Agriculture, Food and Wine and Waite Research Institute, who were recently awarded ARC Discovery Projects.

Protecting cereal grain development at high temperatures

Professor Dabing Zhang; Associate Professor Matthew Tucker; Associate Professor Stuart Roy; Associate Professor Mary Byrne; Professor Malcolm Bennett; Professor Dr George Coupland.

This project aims to investigate new temperature-responsive factors that regulate cereal grain development to protect grain production under heat stress. The new research will leverage international collaborations with access to cutting-edge genetic and technological resources, and refine novel X-ray imaging techniques in Australia, to observe how temperature affects flower structure and function in barley and rice. Favourable mutations that optimise plant yield and fitness will be defined and explored in other, more complex, cereals such as wheat. Expected outcomes will be fundamental breakthroughs in understanding how plants respond to, and buffer, the effects of heat to lead to translational breeding strategies that bolster grain yield.

Understanding the mechanisms that inhibit and promote biofilm expansion

Associate Professor Benjamin Binder; Dr Campbell Gourlay; Dr John Green; Dr Alexander Tam; Professor Vladimir Jiranek.

Yeasts have been used for biotechnology throughout recorded history. They are important human pathogens, and major experimental models of eukaryotic cells. Although yeasts are some of the most studied organisms in biology, their modes of colony biofilm formation are not fully understood. Methods to investigate the environmental and genetic processes that drive colony biofilm formation will be developed in this proposed project. They will provide a deeper understanding of the mechanisms that inhibit and promote biofilm formation, and colonial morphology in the different modes of growth of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, with implications for this and other biofilm-forming yeasts of biotechnological or medical importance.

Professor Dabing Zhang

A/Professor Matthew Tucker

A/Professor Stuart Roy

Professor Vladimir Jiranek

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