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Sara Hadjigol

Sara2Mrs Sara Hadjigol
MSc student

Topic: Association genetic analysis of frost resistance in Eucalyptus globulus ssp. globulus using candidate genes

University of Tasmania


Eucalyptus globulus ssp. globulus, commonly known as the blue gum, is a widespread species in southeastern Australia.  It exhibits a large amount of genetic variation across its range for many traits including frost resistance. My project aims to study the genetic control of frost resistance in the blue gum at the molecular level.  In order to do this, the first part of my project involves a collaboration with Dr Saravanan Thavamanikumar (working under CRC Program 2 at the University of Melbourne) to further develop the CRC’s “Association Genetics Population” (AGP) of the blue gum.  This involves using a large number of microsatellites to study the genetic structure of the species.  The second part of my project will involve finding associations between candidate genes for frost resistance and frost resistance data in the AGP and validating the significant associations using natural populations exposed to steep gradients in altitude and exposure. The outcome of the research will be a better understanding of genetic variation in the blue gum and its adaptation to cold.

My supervisors are: Associate Professor René Vaillancourt, Professor Brad Potts, Dr Dorothy Steane and Dr Rebecca Jones, all from the School of Plant Science, University of Tasmania.