The genomic basis of ash dieback tolerance

Theme: Biodiversity & Ecology

Main Supervisor:

Richard Buggs

School of Biological and Chemical Sciences, QMUL

Project Description:

In partnership with the Forestry Commission’s research arm, Forest Research, this PhD project will exploit genomic technologies to accelerate the development of ash trees that can resist or tolerate ash dieback, caused by the fungal pathogen Hymenoscyphus pseudoalbidus.

The project will be co-supervised by Dr Richard Buggs, who led the NERC-funded British Ash Tree Genome Project at QMUL, and Dr Steve Lee, Programme Leader for Genetic Improvement at Forest Research. Genomic and transcriptomic approaches will be used to seek understanding of the genetic basis for patterns of tolerance/susceptibility of ash trees to ash dieback in large-scale plantations of ash carried out by Forest Research in 2013, funded by Defra.

The PhD student will join a vibrant lab at QMUL working on tree genomics, and benefit from the expertise and resources of Forest Research and the wider scientific community working on ash dieback.

Policy Impact of Research:

This research will contribute to the development of ash trees that can tolerate the ash dieback fungus that is devastating European forests.

Success in this endevour will impact tree conservation and sustainable forestry throughout Britain and Europe.


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