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Dr Claudia Vickers

Synthetic Biology Future Science Platform Leader


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Professor Claudia Vickers joined CSIRO in January 2017 to lead the CSIRO Synthetic Biology Future Science Platform (SynBioFSP), which is aimed at expanding synthetic biology research both within CSIRO and across Australia.

Professor Vickers' early research interests spanned crop plant engineering, plant physiology, abiotic stress and the metabolic regulation of volatile isoprenoids. Over the last decade, she has focused on metabolic regulation of isoprenoid natural products in plants and microbes, and on developing synthetic biology tools for rational re-engineering of microbial metabolism for production of isoprenoids. Isoprenoids (terpenes) are a large group of natural products with many biological functions and diverse industrial applications. Since 2017 Professor Vickers has led the CSIRO SynBioFSP, a highly collaborative $60 M R&D program aimed at expanding Australia’s synthetic biology capability and ultimately developing a synthetic biology-based industry in the nation. She was founding President of Synthetic Biology Australia and served on the expert working groups for Australia’s national synthetic biology roadmap (delivered by the Australian Council of Learned Academies) and the Australian government NCRIS Synthetic Biology Infrastructure Investment Plan, and is a Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) Fellow. She serves on editorial boards for eight international journals, including as a handing editor for ACS Synthetic Biology and ASM mSystems. She has Adjunct Professor roles at Queensland University of Technology and Griffith University.

Professor Vickers has worked with industry partners in a range of application areas to deliver industry-focused outcomes and provide consulting expertise. She has also acted as an advisor on synthetic biology and industrial biotechnology for Australian State and Federal governments and for a variety of international governmental and non-governmental organizations.

Achievements and Awards

  • 2014-2018

    Accelerate Mid-Career Fellowship
    Queensland Government

  • 2019-2022

    FSANZ Fellow
    Food Standards Australia and New Zealand

  • 2019-2019

    BOSS Magazine 2019 True Leader
    Australian Financial Review

  • 2014-2014

    Young Tall Poppy Science Award
    Australian Institute of Policy & Science

  • 2013-2013

    Foundation Research Excellence Award
    The University of Queensland

  • 2010-2010

    Grand Challenge Commentary competition winner
    Nature Chemical Biology

  • 2010-2014

    Smart Futures Fellowship
    Queensland Government

  • 2007-2007

    Inaugural Interdisciplinary Science Communication Award
    Gordon Research Conference on Biogenic Volatiles and the Atmosphere

  • 2010-2010

    Research Travel Fellowship: Scientific Visit to Korea
    Australian Academy of Science

Current Roles

  • Director
    Synthetic Biology FSP

Academic Qualifications

  • 2004

    The University of Queensland

  • 1998

    BSc (Hons Class I)
    The University of Queensland