Dr Sam Periyannan

Adjunct Fellow

Centre for Plant Science
Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation


I was brought up in a small farm in Southern part of India and I have come to find scientific research in Agricultural science as fascinating and rewarding. In particular, genetics and breeding of disease resistance has captured my interest, given that plant disease is a major threat to global food security. With a PhD from the University of Sydney, I started my scientific career as Postdoctoral fellow at the Cereal Rust Resistance team of CSIRO Agriculture & Food, Canberra where as lead researcher and team member cloned five rust disease resistance genes in wheat. Further in collaboration with JIC, UK, identified a rapid resistance gene isolation technology called “MutRenSeq”. Currently, using the platform to isolate additional rust resistances aimed towards the development of gene cassettes for durable rust resistance. Through my Adjunct position at QAAFI, University of Queensland and PBI, University of Sydney, I actively take part in training next generation researchers on molecular genetics of cereal disease resistance.

Research Impacts

Plant disease have emerged as a major threat to global food security particularly the rust disease that cause severe epidemics in the world food crop wheat. Through molecular genetic analysis, our research delivers molecular markers for rapid breeding of rust disease resistant wheat lines. Subsequently, the isolation of rust resistance genes using conventional and modern genetic approaches enable the understanding of the fundamental biology behind rust and wheat interaction.


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Journal Article