From soil to cell and cell to soil: a journey from the forests of Canada to the paddy fields of Asia
Hosted by Professor Michael McCarthy
Professor Herbert J. Kronzucker, University of Melbourne
Professor Herbert J. Kronzucker
University of Melbourne
Professor Kronzucker pursued his undergraduate education at the University of Würzburg, Germany, in biology, chemistry, medicine, and the arts. A professionally trained violinist, he relocated to Canada in 1988 on a oneyear arts scholarship. After finishing his undergraduate studies in Germany, he returned to Canada in 1991 to pursue a Ph.D. in plant biology at the University of British Columbia. In 1996, Prof. Kronzucker joined the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) in the Philippines, as a Rockefeller ‘Human Frontier’ Fellow, joining the mission of developing novel approaches to the study of nitrogen acquisition by tropicallowland rice, the world’s principal food crop. In 1998, he accepted the position of Assistant Professor at the University of Western Ontario, and was recruited three years later by the University of Toronto, Canada’s leading research university. He was promoted to the rank of Full Professor in 2007. Prof. Kronzucker is renowned for his studies on ion acquisition by trees and cereals, from cellular to ecosystem levels, with a focus on nitrogen dynamics, potassium relations, and salt toxicity. He has held a Canada Research Chair in Systems Biology of Plant Nutrition and Ion Transport, and established the Canadian Centre for World Hunger Research (CCWHR) at the University of Toronto, a multidisciplinary think tank and research base dedicated to addressing the challenge of world hunger through cuttingedge research. He served as its Director until moving to Australia in 2017. He has published >113 articles, including in the foremost international science journals (Nature, Nature Plants, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, Trends in Plant Science), and his studies are covered in over 90 textbooks as well as the Encyclopedia of Life Sciences (www.els.net). His work is ranked in the top 0.1% of his field and has been frequently featured in the media, including the New York Times, the Süddeutsche Zeitung, the Christian Science Monitor, the Economic Times, the Times of India, and cover articles in the Globe and Mail and Toronto Life Magazine. In 2017, he accepted the post of Head of School of BioSciences at the University of Melbourne.