Nanotechnology in general and nanomaterials in particular promise to provide many solutions to environmental issues.

Current environmental research at the Centre focuses on conversion of feedstock to biofuels and chemicals and applications in agriculture and veterinary science.

Utilisation of nanoparticles can improve crop protection and productivity through crop modification and virus protection, improve animal health through vaccination as well as improve efficiency of herbicide use.

Agricultural and Horticultural Technology

Clay nanoparticle-facilitated RNAi for non-transgenic modification of crops

Prof. Zhi Ping (Gordon) Xu  (2019–2021)  

Topical application of double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) for induced RNA interference (RNAi) represents an attractive alternative to genetically engineered crops. However, naked dsRNA is unstable and furthermore, is not efficiently taken up by plants. For these reasons, topical application of dsRNA has thus far produced only modest induction of RNAi in plants. This project aims to identify the most effective form of dsRNA for inducing systemic RNAi in plants, and develop clay nanoparticles to facilitate the uptake and movement of dsRNA in plants for maximal systemic RNAi. The key outcome from the project will be robust strategies for nanoparticle-mediated non-transgenic trait modification, including improved crop protection and productivity.


Novel Tropical Vegetable and Cotton Virus Protection

Prof. Neena Mitter,  Prof. Zhi Ping (Gordon) Xu and Prof. Bernard Carroll  (2018–2021)  


Advance Queensland Research Fellowship (Mid): Engineering nanohybrid platforms for oral vaccination combined with animal feed

Dr Li Li  (2016–2019) 


Nanoherbicide Development (Extension 2)

Prof. Zhi Ping (Gordon) Xu  (2017–2018)