Agricultural Crop Research

Jasmine Toole

My role is split in two. The soil sampling side of my job has me in the field digging for root and soil samples which I then analyse. On the knowledge exchange side of my role, I organise knowledge transfer events such as webinars and farm walks as well as create dissemination materials which are aimed at farmers and agronomists.

Current research/PhD projects

Centre for High Carbon Capture

4 year project (3.5 years left)
20 partners

DEFRA, Innovate UK

Eda Knights

Research interests

I joined the team of Dr. Stéphanie Swarbreck as a PhD student in October 2023. In my project the overall hypothesis to be tested is whether we can reduce greenhouse gas (GHGs) emissions associated with wheat production by careful selection of new wheat lines and agronomic practises associated with regenerative agriculture.

Dr Shraddha Dahale

During my Ph.D., I worked with Dr. Saikat Bhattacharjee at the UNESCO-Regional Centre for Biotechnology, Faridabad, India where I elucidated the virulence function of HopA1 effectors from different pathovars of Pseudomonas syrinage and its evolution to avoid its recognition in planta. Following my Ph.D., I worked as a visiting Researcher with Prof. Florian Grundler at the University of Bonn, Germany where I was involved in studying the plant-nematode interaction.

Dr Nastasiya Grinberg

Nastasiya is a mathematician with a background in probability theory and statistics and interest in solving complex biological questions through mathematical modelling and use of machine learning. She is particular interested in alternative approaches to modelling and analysis of biological data, such as FSPM (functional-structural crop modelling) and use of formal logic. Other interests involve multi-scale modelling (integration of knowledge from several different domains) and method development.

Martina Capozzi

Research interests

Nitrogen response in wheat and other crops; sustainable agricultural practises; arbuscular mycorrhizae.

Research projects

Wheat decision: to respond or not respond to available nitrogen; Duration: March 2022-2025; Partners:  NIAB (lead); Funding: BBSRC

Dr Graham Dow

Graham's research is focused on understanding mechanisms that facilitate plant-environment interactions and increase crop resilience to climate change. These topics are approached using a combination of genetic and physiological tools, with a main focus on stomatal traits. Stomata are key gatekeepers for plant-environment interactions because they control gas-exchange at the leaf surface. They strongly contribute to water-use efficiency, photosynthetic processes, temperature regulation, hydraulic integrity, and organismal plasticity.

Dr Camila Zanella

Camila joined NIAB in 2016, working as a post-doc researcher across a range of ongoing research projects in the Cambridge Crop Research department. Her research focuses on the application of classical genetics studies, plant molecular genetics and genomics, including genetic mapping and genome wide association screens, to investigate the genetic control of disease resistance to stripe (yellow), leaf (brown) and stem (black) rust, yield, yield components, and quality traits in cereal crops, with particular focus on wheat and multi-founder advanced generation inter-cross (MAGIC) populations.

Dr Nichola Hawkins

Nichola’s research focuses on the evolutionary biology of plant pathogens, and how we can develop more durable crop disease control strategies against ever-evolving pathogen populations. This includes factors driving the evolution of fungicide resistance, and how these will apply to future crop protection measures, in pathogens including Zymoseptoria tritici which causes the major wheat disease Septoria leaf blotch.


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