Gondwana Genomics is now accelerating plantation performance through long-awaited genetic marker-assisted selection (MAS).
Advanced MAS screening technology, developed through 10 years of plantation research, is now unlocking the genetic potential of trees. And it is being used for commercial growers right now.
Our newly developed next-generation genotyping platform allows for cost-effective implementation of a testing program, fast turnaround and high accuracy.
Our genetic markers have been proven to highly accurately predict tree performance and deliver substantial gains—fast. Armed with the knowledge these markers provide, you can boost your business through increased growth, density, pulp yield, energy value and disease resistance in your trees.
Gondwana Genomics is the world’s only provider of these advanced genetic screening techniques, which have been developed in Australia, the cradle of the eucalypt family.
Contact us today to discuss how advanced MAS can be applied to increase your commercial yields.
Some traits are heavily influenced by environmental conditions. Our technology looks beyond these factors and sees directly into a tree’s DNA. This means you can be sure your seed orchard or clonal trees are indeed elite. It also means we can efficiently test a much larger number of trees.
Because Gondwana Genomics can help maintain genetic diversity in your plantations, you can better prepare against current and emerging diseases—such as eucalypt rust—that may threaten your plantations. We can also bolster your defences by identifying markers to your specific disease threats.
Our services allow you to make effective and targeted crosses to produce elite offspring. Further testing ensures that offspring are picking up the right genes from each parent. This accelerates your gains and speeds up the development of the next generation of elite trees.
Our next-generation testing platform allows for very low quantities of material for successful testing. It is now possible and easy and very cost effective to screen thousands of trees in commercial breeding programs.
Have complete visibility into your genetics and perform vital program error correction. Make more powerful decisions with confidence.
Start of quantitative analysis
The Australian Tree Seed Centre (a research division of CSIRO) begins carrying out comprehensive seed collections from native Australian eucalypt stands in the 1980s and ‘90s. In partnership with other researchers, state agencies and companies, large numbers of progeny trials are established, including seedling and clonal seed orchards, to investigate the genetic basis of commercial traits.
Molecular research commences
The first molecular research on eucalypts is carried out in the early 1990s. This is largely aimed at identifying molecular markers that control growth and wood traits in commercial eucalypts. Some positive markers are discovered, but these fail to predict trait performance in unrelated families or in different environments. Their application in real-world breeding programs is therefore limited.
Advanced markers discovered
In the years from 2005, CSIRO scientists begin to make bold advances in screening technology, developing approaches to marker discovery that harness the full potential of each species across diverse natural populations. This research uncovers large numbers of genetic markers for commercial traits in a range of plantation eucalypts.
Genetic markers confirmed
Markers identifying genes with a positive influence on traits are further established between 2005 and 2014. These markers are demonstrated to predict traits in unrelated eucalypt populations growing in different environments—with accuracies equivalent to those achieved in clonally replicated field trials. At last, scientists are able to define advantageous genetic traits, free of the confounding influence of environmental factors.
Marker-assisted selection commercially available
In recognition of its enormous economic potential, marker-assisted selection (MAS) technology is made commercially available in 2014. Thanks to the vast expertise of the company, CSIRO grants Australian-based Gondwana Genomics the global licensing rights to commercialise the marker technology worldwide.
Next-Generation genotyping commercially available
Gondwana Genomics’ scientists develop new next-generation genotyping methods. In a single cost-effect DNA test it’s now possible to do marker-assisted selection, fingerprinting and family pedigree reconstruction. Gondwana Genomics can now test for thousands of targeted SNPs in a single DNA test.
MAS implemented in numerous breeding programs
Marker Assisted Selection is now being implemented by Gondwana Genomics in many commercial breeding programs.
Robert has over 11 years of experience leading marketing, media and analytical teams, bringing technical solutions to real-world success. His passion for the marker technology has seen Gondwana Genomics evolve from research into successful commercial adoption of MAS. He is also a Director of CHOICE, Australia’s independent consumer association.
Dr Bala Thumma
BSc, MSc and PhD in Plant Genetics, UQ
Bala joined CSIRO in 2001 and his research has led to the development of the CSIRO marker technology that is licensed to Gondwana Genomics. His strong technical leadership has resulted in the new ‘target genotyping by sequencing method’ being developed at Gondwana Genomics. Currently, he is steering several projects aimed at implementing ‘MAS’ in breeding programs.
Dr Saravanan Thavamanikumar
BSc (Agr), MSc, PhD in Tree Biotechnology, UniMelb
Senior Research Scientist and Head of Operations
Saro is the Senior Research Scientist leading the operations at Gondwana Genomics. His area of specialisation is applying DNA-based marker technology to accelerate breeding gains in trees and other crop species. Saro is instrumental in the development and implementation of the new cost effective ‘targeted SNP genotyping by sequencing’.
BA Admin, UC
Justine brings extensive experience in financial management, project management and business development, having previously run the office functions for successful technology startups.
Dr Simon Southerton
BSc (Agr) and PhD in Plant Science, USyd
Genetics and Genomics Consultant, Co-Founder
Simon led CSIRO’s Forest Genetics and Genomics research from 2005 until 2014. He is a world leader in molecular research on eucalyptus trees.
Dr Jeremy Brawner
BSc, MSc and PhD in Forest Quantitative Genetics, UQ
Breeding and Adoption Strategy Consultant
Jeremy’s expertise in genetic analysis has been utilised in a wide range of tree improvement programs to develop breeding and deployment populations.
Extensive experience in the establishment and growth of commercial business enterprises. Co-founded and executive management of the Grindley group of Companies with activities in major commercial construction and development. Currently holding various directorships including Grindley Properties, Padcorp and the Pymble Golf Club.