Next generation Gene-editing technology

This project will be awarded through ANU, in partnership with the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC). This project aims to test and develop approaches to multiplex gene editing

More about the project

This project aims to test and develop approaches to multiplex gene editing. The project will give the student the opportunity to test the efficiency by which multiple gene edits can be progressed simultaneously. The main focus is likely to be cereals, but multiplex gene editing across various crops may be explored. The project will include assessment of the challenges of multiplexing. The gene edits will target key traits of interest to the GRDC. The student will gain expertise in applied and fundamental science and have the opportunity to prepare industry-relevant high-impact publications.

Project focus areas will include

  • Assessment and development of multiplex gene editing
  • Determination of the efficiency of multiplex gene editing and testing approaches to maximise efficiency
  • Characterisation of gene edited plants for alterations in the trait of interest and testing for any unintended effects
  • The student will learn modern biotechnology techniques and work with gene edited plants in greenhouse and field conditions.

Project supervisor

Robert (Bob) Furbank heads the Furbank Lab – Improving photosynthesis and crop yield, and is a Chief Investigator in the ARC Training Centre for Future Crop Development.

Robert was awarded a Bachelor of Science (first class Honours) from the University of Wollongong, in 1979. He completed his PhD at The Australian National University, in 1982.

Robert is internationally known for his research into aspects of photosynthesis and carbon allocation/transport in crop plants, and understanding and manipulating Cphotosynthesis. He is also part of the CIMMYT led International Wheat Yield Consortium and the IRRI Global Rice Initiative Science Partnership.

He was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II research fellowship in 1987 and two ACT ICT Innovation Awards in 2013 and the CSIRO Plant Industry Leadership Award in 2014.

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