P2-010 Advancing an acoustic-induced pollination solution for protected cropping
Project Leader

Dr Chris Cazzonelli is a Senior Lecturer in Plant Molecular Biology at Western Sydney University (WSU). He completed his Bachelor of Science (Honours Class I) at the University of Queensland (UQ) and won an Australian Postgraduate Award to study mechanical stress gene regulation, receiving a PhD in plant molecular biology and plant genetic engineering from UQ in 2002. Dr Cazzonelli subsequently won a prestigious Postdoctoral Fellowship with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to investigate the molecular nature of gene activation, gene silencing and remote sensing of stress events in plants. In 2006, Dr Cazzonelli was recruited by the ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology at the Australian National University (ANU) to explore what regulates the production of health-promoting carotenoid metabolites in plants. He was awarded the coveted Goldacre Medal by the Australian Society of Plant Biologists in 2010. Dr Cazzonelli now leads the Environmental Epigenetics Laboratory (EEL) at WSU, working to better understand the molecular and physiological mechanisms that facilitate metabolic homeostasis, prime plant-stress acclimation, and program plant adaptation to changes in the environment (such as changes in light quality, CO2 levels, mechanical stress, acoustic vibration and heatwaves). The EEL links memory-forming processes to metabolite signalling and genetic regulation that controls the production of micronutrients; that has follow-on benefits for human and animal health. It is ‘a scientific factory of discovery and knowledge, advancing education, biological understanding, horticultural protected cropping, tree genomics, crop nutrition and environmental sustainability of agriculture’.