Dr Anne Sawyer

Advance Queensland Fellow

School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences
Faculty of Science

Research Fellow/Senior Research off

Centre for Horticultural Science
Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation
+61 7 336 54871


Dr Anne Sawyer is a molecular plant biologist passionate about the development of plant-based solutions to global problems. Her current research focus is the development of RNA vaccines to protect plants from fungal pathogens. Dr Sawyer completed her PhD at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland on gene expression in microalgae. Following this, she carried out postdoctoral research at Ruhr University Bochum in Germany on microalgal hydrogen production. Dr Sawyer then returned to Australia to study RNA interference in plants and plant pathogenic fungi. Dr Sawyer has research experience in the fields of biotechnology, molecular biology, microalgal biology, synthetic biology, biochemistry and structural biology.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Queensland


  • Degnan, Rebecca M., Shuey, Louise S., Radford-Smith, Julian, Gardiner, Donald M., Carroll, Bernard J., Mitter, Neena, McTaggart, Alistair R. and Sawyer, Anne (2023). Double-stranded RNA prevents and cures infection by rust fungi. Communications Biology, 6 (1) 1234, 1-10. doi: 10.1038/s42003-023-05618-z

  • Mann, Christopher W. G., Sawyer, Anne, Gardiner, Donald M., Mitter, Neena, Carroll, Bernard J. and Eamens, Andrew L. (2023). RNA-based control of fungal pathogens in plants. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 24 (15) 12391, 1-34. doi: 10.3390/ijms241512391

  • Degnan, Rebecca M., McTaggart, Alistair R., Shuey, Louise S., Pame, Leny Jane S., Smith, Grant R., Gardiner, Donald M., Nock, Volker, Soffe, Rebecca, Sale, Sarah, Garrill, Ashley, Carroll, Bernard J., Mitter, Neena and Sawyer, Anne (2022). Exogenous double‐stranded RNA inhibits the infection physiology of rust fungi to reduce symptoms in planta. Molecular Plant Pathology, 24 (3), 191-207. doi: 10.1111/mpp.13286

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  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision


Book Chapter

  • Sawyer, Anne, Esselborn, Julian, Winkler, Martin and Happe, Thomas (2017). Chlamydomonas: hydrogenase and hydrogen production. Chlamydomonas: biotechnology and biomedicine. (pp. 21-44) edited by Michael Hippler. Cham, Switzerland: Springer International Publishing. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-66360-9_2

Journal Article

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision