Australian - Italian. Born on 27 June 1976.
I am an enthusiastic Research Fellow working at the Australian Herbicide Resistance Initiative, School of Plant Biology, the University of Western Australia (http://www.ahri.uwa.edu.au/) and I have 10 years of leadership in research on the evolution and management of agricultural weeds.
1) Assessing the potential for resistance evolution to new herbicides before their commercial release in Australia (advancing from AHRI work on the new herbicides pyroxasulfone and prosulfocarb; See CV publications # 7, 8, 11, 13, 24);
2) Exploring innovative herbicide solutions for improved control of multi-resistant weeds and delay weed resistance evolution. For example, the efficacy of old and new herbicides used in combination or mixtures should be carefully assessed to exploit possible synergies between the two compounds to obtain greater herbicide efficacy in weed control.
Mixtures of different herbicide modes of action are known to effectively delay resistance. However, a sound knowledge of the weed biology, physiology and biochemistry of the herbicide-weed interaction is required. In AHRI we have all the necessary knowledge to deduce which combination of compounds (e.g. safeners, synergists, mixtures of herbicides and insecticides or fungicides) may result in synergistic interaction and much improved weed control of multi-resistant weeds as well as proactively delay the evolution of resistance to new herbicides. This research can synergize with current GRDC investments and attract investments from multi-national and local corporations.
3) Establish a specialized centre at UWA to conduct herbicide efficacy testing and quantify resistance levels on weed seed samples directly provided by farmers. These activities will allow a greater focus on local resistance issues and provide direct support to growers.
The envisaged research will create continuous opportunities for research projects to be conducted by undergraduate Honours, PhD students and postdoctoral fellows. It will create unique opportunities for AHRI to be more proactive in the Australian grains industry, collaborate with the public and private sectors and generate revenues to allow employment and training of young Australian students and researchers.
4) Studying innovative methods of weedy rice control in Asia (Vietnam and Philippines).
1) ACIAR. Weedy Rice in the Philippines and Vietnam. 2015-2016 (160k).
2) Bayer Crop Science. Potential for resistance evolution to the novel herbicide indaziflam. 2014-2015 (70k).
3) 2014-15 GRDC investments plan. Use of chemicals to increase frost tolerance in Australian crops. (230k).
4) 2013. Screening to identify new herbicide molecules for annual ryegrass control. Nufarm, Australia (10k).
5) 2013. Can frost tolerance be induced in wheat plants? A 100 million dollar question. UWA-UQ Bilateral Research Collaboration Award (10k).
6) 2013. Grain Research Development Corporation. Proof of concept – use of chemicals to increase frost hardiness in wheat (40k).
7) 2011. Rural Industries Research Development Corporation. Climate change effects of herbicide sustainability (131k).
8) 2008-09. Australian Weed Research Centre. Gene flow in ryegrass in organic farms (70k).
9) 2008-09. Australian Weed Research Centre. Mechanistic basis of glyphosate and paraquat resistance (70k).
Awarded as Collaborator
1) 2015-2020. GRDC. Australian Herbicide Resistance Initiative - Phase 5 (approx 500k).
2) 2010-2015. GRDC. Australian Herbicide Resistance Initiative - Phase 4. (approx 500k)
3) 2009-2012. GRDC. Impact of transgenic canola and invasive potential in the Australian environment (200k).
4) 2007-2010. GRDC. Western Australian Herbicide Resistance Initiative - Phase 3. (approx 300k).
I am the lead author in 60% of my peer-reviewed publications. I have led several research projects and delivered timely results according to set milestones. As a principal investigator I have attracted grants from different agencies for a total of $0.7M and participated as a collaborator in GRDC-funded grants for a total of $1.5M. I am currently the Activity Leader of an ACIAR (Australia Centre for International Agronomic Research) small R&D grant to study weedy rice issues and management in Asia which has the potential to develop into a full research proposal for a 5-year grant.