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Joanne Russell

Staff picture: Joanne Russell
Cell and Molecular Sciences
Cell and Molecular Sciences
Senior Postdoctoral Scientist
Joanne.Russell@hutton.ac.uk
+44 (0)344 928 5428 (*)

The James Hutton Institute
Invergowrie
Dundee DD2 5DA
Scotland UK

 

Current research interests

Research over the past 15 years has focussed on the use of molecular markers to address a wide range of genetic and biological issues in a range of plant species, including conservation, habitat fragmentation, comparative genome analysis and mapping studies.

Diversity and association analysis in barley

Recently we have begun to explore diversity in barley at the gene level by exploiting genomics and informatics technologies via EU and Generation Challenge Program funding, collaborating with European and North American groups and colleagues at the International Centre for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA).

Marker development in temperate and tropical tree species

Several studies focussing on comparative genomics and the development of polymorphic markers (SNPs) for adaptive variation in economically important European tree species have been funded through EU collaborations. Research has also been carried out on tropical tree species including, Calycophyllum spruceanum, Theobroma cacoa and Cocos nucifera, as well as important indigenous fruit trees, Prunus Africana and Allanblackia species from sub-Saharan Africa. Much of this work has been in collaboration with colleagues at World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF).

Conservation and habitat fragmentation

Sequencing and developing gene-based markers in species of high conservation priority offer novel insights into biodiversity, including relating sequence diversity and biological function. Focus of this work is on biodiversity within Scotland and includes a wide-range of plant species including: sub-arctic willow scrub, which is essentially restricted to the Scottish mountains; the rare species Anastrophyllum joergensenii, a dioecious leafy liverwort restricted to cool montane high-rainfall areas; Athyrium distentifolium, a diploid out-crossing fern of montane areas; Koenigia islandica, a diminutive annual and; Scots pine along with associated ground flora. Collaborations are with the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh and the Universities of Aberdeen and Edinburgh.


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The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.