World-renowned plant geneticist and botanist Professor Adrienne Clarke was born in Melbourne in 1938.
She is a scientist of firsts, being the first female appointed Laureate Professor at the University of Melbourne, her team also the first to clone the gene (S gene) which regulates self-compatibility in plants and the first to clone the DNA of an arabinogalactan protein (a class of plant proteoglycan).
Prof Clarke was Laureate Professor of Botany at the Plant Cell Biology Research Centre of the University of Melbourne until 2005, and remains on at the university in an honorary position.
She continues to work on many government and private boards and committees. She is also heavily involved with many national and international scientific bodies and, until 2010, was a founding Director of Hexima Limited, a company that focuses on agricultural biotechnology.
Throughout her career, Prof Clarke has received many honours and awards, including appointment as a Companion in the Order of Australia and as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science (FAA) and the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (FTSE).
This person has made the short list for the title National Living Treasure, this title is conferred when someone accomplishes an outstanding achievement, swelling the country’s consciousness with admiration, pride and acknowledgement... be they scientists or sports stars; actors, artists or Indigenous activists; politicians, philanthropists or explorers, The National Trust’s 2012 nominees are a true cross section of our country’s finest.
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