Melissa de Oliveira Santos Garcia

Dr Melissa de Oliveira Santos Garcia

Research Fellow

School of Agriculture, Food and Wine

Faculty of Sciences

Eligible to supervise Masters and PhD - email supervisor to discuss availability.


I'm a plant geneticist interested in plant breeding and the use of new genetic diversity. After completing my BSc in Biological Sciences, I did a MSc on Genetics and Plant Breeding where I looked at the genetic diversity in a genus of Brazilian orchids. During my PhD, I continued to work on genetic diversity and its use in plant breeding by studying a legume forage. This project was a collaboration between the University of Campinas and the Brazilian Agricultural Corporation (Embrapa) to assist their breeding programs. Following my PhD, I got a postdoc position to study sugarcane as part of a large program aiming at improving sugarcane for ethanol production.
In 2011, I moved to Australia to work at the Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics (ACPFG). At ACPFG, I was involved in several projects such as the introgression of yield QTL into different backgrounds, the development and use of new molecular markers and marker technologies, QTL mapping and genome wide association studies. I was also involved in a collaboration with DuPont Pioneer to study hybrid wheat.
From 2015 to 2020, I worked on the ARC Industrial Transformation Research Hub for genetic diversity and molecular breeding for wheat in a hot and dry climate (IH130200027) where I led a program that looked at germplasm development for genetic diversity, mostly through the use of a nested association mapping population.
Since late 2019, I have been leading the Faba bean breeding program at the University of Adelaide, with a focus on developing new varieties for the Southern region of Australia and using genomics approaches in plant breeding.

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  • Appointments

    Date Position Institution name
    2011 Research Fellow University of Adelaide
    2004 - 2011 Postdoctoral Fellow University of Campinas
  • Language Competencies

    Language Competency
    English Can read, write, speak, understand spoken and peer review
    Portuguese Can read, write, speak, understand spoken and peer review
  • Education

    Date Institution name Country Title
    2005 - 2009 The University of Campinas Brazil PhD
    2002 - 2004 The University of Londrina Brazil MSc
  • Research Interests

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  • Journals

    Year Citation
    2021 Asif, M. A., Garcia, M., Tilbrook, J., Brien, C., Dowling, K., Berger, B., . . . Pearson, A. S. (2021). Identification of salt tolerance QTL in a wheat RIL mapping population using destructive and non-destructive phenotyping. Functional Plant Biology, 48(2), 131-140.
    DOI Scopus2 WoS2 Europe PMC1
    2021 Tura, H., Edwards, J., Gahlaut, V., Garcia, M., Sznajder, B., Baumann, U., . . . Fleury, D. (2021). Correction to: QTL analysis and fine mapping of a QTL for yield‑related traits in wheat grown in dry and hot environments. Theoretical and Applied Genetics, 134(5), 1 page.
    DOI Europe PMC1
    2021 Chidzanga, C., Fleury, D., Baumann, U., Mullan, D., Watanabe, S., Kalambettu, P., . . . Garcia, M. (2021). Development of an Australian bread wheat nested association mapping population, a new genetic diversity resource for breeding under dry and hot climates. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 22(9), 4348-1-4348-18.
    DOI
    2020 Schmidt, J., Garcia, M., Brien, C., Kalambettu, P., Garnett, T., Fleury, D., & Tricker, P. J. (2020). Transcripts of wheat at a target locus on chromosome 6B associated with increased yield, leaf mass and chlorophyll index under combined drought and heat stress. PLoS One, 15(11), e0241966-1-e0241966-24.
    DOI Scopus1 WoS1
    2020 Tura, H., Edwards, J., Gahlaut, V., Garcia, M., Sznajder, B., Baumann, U., . . . Fleury, D. (2020). QTL analysis and fine mapping of a QTL for yield-related traits in wheat grown in dry and hot environments. Theoretical and Applied Genetics, 133(1), 239-257.
    DOI Scopus15 WoS16 Europe PMC8
    2020 Schmidt, J., Tricker, P. J., Eckermann, P., Kalambettu, P., Garcia, M., & Fleury, D. (2020). Novel alleles for combined drought and heat stress tolerance in wheat. Frontiers in Plant Science, 10, 1-14.
    DOI Scopus10 WoS11 Europe PMC7
    2019 Garcia, M., Eckermann, P., Haefele, S., Satija, S., Sznajder, B., Timmins, A., . . . Fleury, D. (2019). Genome-wide association mapping of grain yield in a diverse collection of spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) evaluated in southern Australia. PLoS ONE, 14(2), e0211730-1-e0211730-19.
    DOI Scopus25 WoS23 Europe PMC15
    2019 Pallotta, M. A., Warner, P., Kouidri, A., Tucker, E. J., Baes, M., Suchecki, R., . . . Whitford, R. (2019). Wheat ms5 male-sterility is induced by recessive homoeologous A and D genome non-specific lipid transfer proteins. Plant Journal, 99(4), 673-685.
    DOI Scopus15 WoS13 Europe PMC4
    2018 Watson-Haigh, N. S., Suchecki, R., Kalashyan, E., Garcia, M., & Baumann, U. (2018). DAWN: a resource for yielding insights into the diversity among wheat genomes. BMC Genomics, 19(1), 941-1-941-20.
    DOI Scopus13 WoS13 Europe PMC10
    2017 Tucker, E., Baumann, U., Kouidri, A., Suchecki, R., Baes, M., Garcia, M., . . . Whitford, R. (2017). Molecular identification of the wheat male fertility gene Ms1 and its prospects for hybrid breeding. Nature Communications, 8(1), 869-1-869-10.
    DOI Scopus49 WoS48 Europe PMC18
    2015 Jayatilake, D., Tucker, E., Brueggemann, J., Lewis, J., Garcia, M., Dreisigacker, S., . . . Mather, D. (2015). Genetic mapping of the Cre8 locus for resistance against cereal cyst nematode (Heterodera avenae Woll.) in wheat. Molecular Breeding, 35(2), 66-1-66-12.
    DOI Scopus11 WoS12 Europe PMC3
    2015 Hayes, J., Pallotta, M., Garcia, M., Öz, M., Rongala, J., & Sutton, T. (2015). Diversity in boron toxicity tolerance of Australian barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) genotypes. BMC Plant Biology, 15(1), 231-1-231-14.
    DOI Scopus6 WoS8 Europe PMC5
    2014 Garcia, M., & Mather, D. E. (2014). From genes to markers: Exploiting gene sequence information to develop tools for plant breeding. Methods in Molecular Biology, 1145, 21-36.
    DOI Scopus4 Europe PMC2
    2013 Whitford, R., Fleury, D., Reif, J., Garcia, M., Okada, T., Korzun, V., & Langridge, P. (2013). Hybrid breeding in wheat: technologies to improve hybrid wheat seed production. Journal of Experimental Botany, 64(18), 5411-5428.
    DOI Scopus136 WoS140 Europe PMC74
    2013 Garcia, M., Vigna, B., Sousa, A., Jungmann, L., Cidade, F., Toledo-Silva, G., . . . Souza, A. (2013). Molecular genetic variability, population structure and mating system in tropical forages. Tropical Grasslands - Forrajes Tropicales, 1(1), 25-30.
    DOI Scopus6
    2013 Garcia, A., Mollinari, M., Marconi, T., Serang, O., Silva, R., Vieira, M., . . . Souza, A. (2013). SNP genotyping allows an in-depth characterisation of the genome of sugarcane and other complex autopolyploids. Scientific Reports, 3(1), 3399-1-3399-10.
    DOI Scopus70 WoS70 Europe PMC46
    2012 Santos-Garcia, M., de Toledo-Silva, G., Sassaki, R., Ferreira, T., Simeão Resende, R., Chiari, L., . . . de Souza, A. (2012). Using genetic diversity information to establish core collections of Stylosanthes capitata and Stylosanthes macrocephala. Genetics and Molecular Biology, 35(4), 847-861.
    DOI Scopus14 WoS12 Europe PMC2
    2012 Santos-Garcia, M., Karia, C., Resende, R., Chiari, L., Vieira, M., Zucchi, M., & Souza, A. (2012). Identification of Stylosanthes guianensis varieties using molecular genetic analysis. AoB Plants, 2012(1), pls001-1-pls001-14.
    DOI Scopus15 WoS15 Europe PMC6
    2011 de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M. (2011). Mating systems in tropical forages: Stylosanthes capitata Vog. and Stylosanthes guianensis (Aubl.) Sw.. Euphytica, 178(2), 185-193.
    DOI Scopus17 WoS15 Europe PMC2
    2010 Rego Oliveira, L., de Faria, R., de Fatima Ruas, C., Ruas, P., de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M., & Carvalho, V. (2010). Genetic analysis of species in the Genus Catasetum (ORCHIDACEAE) using RAPD markers. Brazilian Archives of Biology and Technology: an international journal, 53(2), 375-387.
    DOI Scopus6
    2010 Aurelle, D., & de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M. (2010). Permanent genetic resources added to the Molecular Ecology Resources Database 1 February 2010-31 March 2010. Molecular Ecology Resources, 10(4), 751-754.
    DOI Scopus19 WoS31 Europe PMC9
    2010 Hotta, C. T., Lembke, C. G., Domingues, D. S., Ochoa, E. A., Cruz, G. M. Q., Melotto-Passarin, D. M., . . . Souza, G. M. (2010). The Biotechnology Roadmap for Sugarcane Improvement. Tropical Plant Biology, 3(2), 75-87.
    DOI Scopus48
    2009 VARELA, E. D. U. A. R. D. O. S. O. U. S. A., GONÇALVES, E. V. O. N. N. I. L. D. O. D. A. C. O. S. T. A., SANTOS, M. E. L. I. S. S. A. D. E. O. L. I. V. E. I. R. A., SAMPAIO, I. R. A. C. I. L. D. A., & SCHNEIDER, H. O. R. A. C. I. O. (2009). Isolation and characterization of 11 microsatellite loci in the mangrove crab,
    (Ocypodidae: Ucidinae). Molecular Ecology Resources, 9(5), 1395-1397.

    DOI Scopus3 WoS2 Europe PMC1
    2009 Santos, M., Sassaki, R., Chiari, L., Resende, R., & De Souza, A. (2009). Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci in tropical forage Stylosanthes capitata Vogel. Molecular Ecology Resources, 9(1), 192-194.
    DOI Scopus10 WoS9 Europe PMC4
    2009 de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M., Sassaki, R., Ferreira, T., Resende, M., Chiari, L., Karia, C., . . . Souza, A. (2009). Polymorphic microsatellite loci for Stylosanthes macrocephala Ferr. et Costa, a tropical forage legume. Conservation Genetics Resources, 1(1), 481-485.
    DOI Scopus8 WoS8
    2009 de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M., Karia, C., Resende, M., Chiari, L., Jungmann, L., Zucchi, M., & Souza, A. (2009). Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci in the tropical forage legume Stylosanthes guianensis (Aubl.) Sw.. Conservation Genetics Resources, 1(1), 43-46.
    DOI Scopus12 WoS11
    2009 Ruas, C., Nakayama, T., Ortiz, M., Kuroki, M., Stuessy, T., Ruas, E., . . . Ruas, P. (2009). Isolation and characterization of eight microsatellite loci from the endangered plant species Hypochaeris salzmanniana (Asteraceae). Conservation Genetics, 10(5), 1413-1416.
    DOI Scopus3 WoS3 Europe PMC1
    2009 Souza, L., Mantello, C., de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M., de Souza Goncalves, P., & Souza, A. (2009). Microsatellites from rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis) for genetic diversity analysis and cross-amplification in six Hevea wild species. Conservation Genetics Resources, 1(1), 75-79.
    DOI Scopus25 WoS22
    2008 Santos, K., Santos, M., Laborda, P., Souza, A., Peroni, N., & Nodari, R. (2008). Isolation and characterization of microsatellite markers in Acca sellowiana (Berg) Burret. Molecular Ecology Resources, 8(6), 1417-1419.
    DOI Scopus4 WoS1
    2008 Pinheiro, F., de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M., Palma-Silva, C., Barros, F., Meyer, D., Salatino, A., . . . Cozzolino, S. (2008). Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci in Epidendrum puniceoluteum, an endemic orchid from the Atlantic Rainforest. Molecular Ecology Resources, 8(5), 1114-1116.
    DOI Scopus13 WoS13 Europe PMC9
    2008 Pinheiro, F., Santos, M., Barros, F., Meyer, D., Salatino, A., Souza, A., & Cozzolino, S. (2008). Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci in the Brazilian orchid Epidendrum fulgens. Conservation Genetics, 9(6), 1661-1663.
    DOI Scopus14 WoS15 Europe PMC7
    2007 Ferreirs-Ramos, R., Laborda, P., de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M., Mayor, M., Mestriner, M., Souza, A., & Alzate-Marin, A. (2007). Genetic analysis of forest species Eugenia uniflora L. through of newly developed SSR markers. Conservation Genetics, 9(5), 1281-1285.
    DOI Scopus14 WoS13 Europe PMC6
    2005 Cardamoni Diniz, L., de Fatima Ruas, C., de Paula Carvalho, V., Torres, F., Ruas, E., de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M., . . . Ruas, P. (2005). Genetic diversity among forty coffee varieties assessed by RAPD markers associated with restriction digestion. Brazilian Archives of Biology and Technology, 48(4), 511-521.
    DOI Scopus17 WoS11
    2005 de Fatima Ruas, C., Vanzela, A., de Oliveira Santos Garcia, M., Fregonezi, J., Ruas, E., Matzenbacher, N., & de Aguiar-Perecin, M. (2005). Chromosomal organization and phylogenetic relationships in Hypochaeris species (Asteraceae) from Brazil. Genetics and Molecular Biology, 28(1), 129-139.
    DOI Scopus30 WoS30
  • Filesets

    Year Citation
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Xiaoyan-54 WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Alsen WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Excalibur WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Gladius WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). H-45 WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). RAC-875 WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Volcani-DD-1 WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Wyalkatchem WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Yitpi WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Kukri WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Pastor WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Westonia WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Chara,AUS WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Drysdale WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). Baxter WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Watson-Haigh, N., Suchecki, R., Garcia, M. D. O. S., Kalashyan, E., & Baumann, U. (n.d.). AC-Barrie WGS vs IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 Genome Assembly.
    DOI
    Garcia, M., Eckermann, P., Haefele, S., Satija, S., Sznajder, B., Timmins, A., . . . Fleury, D. (n.d.). Phenotypic and genotypic data from a wheat diversity panel.
    DOI
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  • Current Higher Degree by Research Supervision (University of Adelaide)

    Date Role Research Topic Program Degree Type Student Load Student Name
    2019 Co-Supervisor Breeding Faba Bean (Vicia Faba L.) for Acidic Soils of Australia Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Part Time Mr Samuel Catt
    2018 Principal Supervisor Nested Association Mapping to Identify Genomic Regions Associated with Wheat Yield under Australian Agronomic Conditions Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Miss Charity Chidzanga
  • Past Higher Degree by Research Supervision (University of Adelaide)

    Date Role Research Topic Program Degree Type Student Load Student Name
    2016 - 2020 Principal Supervisor Identification of Novel Loci and Alleles for Drought and Heat Stress Tolerance in Wheat Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Ms Jessica Schmidt
    2015 - 2018 Co-Supervisor Towards the positional cloning of yield QTL on chromosome 1B for drought tolerance in wheat Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Dr Habtamu Seboka Tura
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  • Committee Memberships

    Date Role Committee Institution Country
    2017 - ongoing Member Wheat Initiative Expert Working Group on Wheat Breeding Methods and Strategies
  • Position: Research Fellow
  • Phone: 83136564
  • Email: melissa.garcia@adelaide.edu.au
  • Campus: Waite
  • Building: Northern Barns Group WT08, floor G
  • Room: G 4
  • Org Unit: School of Agriculture, Food and Wine

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