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Hugo Alonso-Cantabrana – C4 Rice Project

Hugo is currently part of the C4 Rice Project, an international consortium funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to improve photosynthesis, and hence yield, in rice. The aim is to genetically engineer rice to implement the C4 carbon concentration mechanism, present in other crops like maize or sugarcane.

His work involves the use of molecular biology tools to genetically modify key components of the photosynthetic machinery; he then analyses the effect of these modifications on photosynthesis at leaf scale, measuring gas exchange, carbon isotope discrimination and enzyme activities.

Hugo holds a PhD in Plant Molecular Biology from the University Miguel Hernandez, Spain and a Master in Bioengineering from the University of Alicante, Spain.

Hugo conducts his research with the Program 1 team, Improving leaf CO2 capture efficiency, in the von Caemmerer Lab at The Australian National University.