- Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics
The Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics (ACPFG) is a research organisation focusing on improving the resistance of
wheatand barleyto hostile environmental conditions, using functional genomicstechnologies.
Scientists at the ACPFG are focusing on stresses that impact
agriculture in Australia, including drought, salinity, high or low temperaturesand mineral deficiencies or toxicities. These stresses, known as abiotic stresses, are a major cause of cereal crop yieldand quality loss throughout the world.
The ACPFG was established in December 2002 after being granted $27 million from the
Australian Research Council(ARC), the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) and the South Australian Government.
It also had support of $30 million from the
University of Adelaide, The University of Melbourne, the Victorian Department of Primary Industries and the University of Queensland.
ACPFG as a research organisation has an unusual structure because it is a
company, but its shareholdersare the research organisations and governments that fund it.
In the second funding cycle the
University of South Australiabecame a shareholder, increasing ACPFG’s focus on bioinformatics, which is the focus of ACPFG researchers in Queensland.
Most ACPFG researchers are based on the University of Adelaide’s Waite Campus in the Plant Genomics Centre.
As well as the core research programs focused on environmental stresses, ACPFG researchers work with other organisations including
CSIROand the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, on nutritional focuses such as beta-glucanand iron biofortification.
Though research outcomes are focused on
wheatand barleyfor Australian farmers, model speciessuch as arabidopsisand riceare often used in ACPFG research. Researchers also explore the genetic diversityof less commercially viable plant varieties, such as those originating from the fertile crescent.
* [http://www.acpfg.com.au ACPFG website]
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