RNA interference is emerging as a potential alternative to traditional chemical applications for crop protection. Plant viruses are responsible for significant yield reductions in horticultural fruit and fibre crops resulting in increasing economic losses around the world. No viricides are presently available with plant virus control achieved by application of insecticides targeting vectors. In this seminar, I will outline my research using RNAi applications to ‘vaccinate’ plants with a vision to ‘one day to replace pesticides’. By applying dsRNA effectors to prime the plant to recognize virus infection, to reduce vector fitness and reduce viral particle retention, I am aiming to effectively deliver a multitargeted, holistic approach to significantly reduce virus infection and vector mediated crop losses for global horticultural industries.

Dr Mobashwer Alam headshotDr Karl E Robinson

Dr Karl Robinson joined QAAFI’s CHS in 2012 as a molecular biologist specialising in RNAi applications against animal and plant viruses. Karl has held postdoctoral research positions within QLD Government/The University of Queensland - Agricultural Biotechnology Centre and the Viral Pathogenesis and Vaccine Group at the VIDO, The University of Saskatchewan, Canada and as an Advance Queensland Research Fellow. Karl is currently, a UQ Amplify researcher investigating spray-on RNAi applications for viruses and insects in high value horticultural crops and delivers the plant virology lectures into the SCMB 3rd year virology course.

Dr Karl E Robinson, UQ Amplify Researcher, Centre for Horticultural Science, Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation E: k.robinson2@uq.edu.au

For any questions, please contact the QAAFI Science Seminar Committee.


About Science Seminars

Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation hosts science seminars across the disciplines of animal, horticulture, crop, food and nutritional sciences.

With a range of speakers from Australia and abroad, the series explores how high-impact science will significantly improve the competitiveness and sustainability of the tropical and sub-tropical food, fibre and agribusiness sectors.

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The Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation is a research institute at The University of Queensland supported by the Queensland Government via the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries.


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