Staff Profiles


Jeremy J. Burdon FAA

Chief Research Scientist
Ph.D., Australian National University, Australia, 1976
Ph.D., honoris causa, Umeå University, Sweden, 1996




Phone (+61) 02 6246 5546
Fax: (+61) 02 6246 5249


Centre for Plant Biodiversity Research
CSIRO Plant Industry
GPO Box 1600
Canberra ACT 2601



My research interests embrace a wide range of coevolutionary interactions between plants and their fungal and microbial pathogens and symbionts. Particular projects focus on: coevolutionary interactions between host resistance and pathogen virulence in a metapopulation context; the evolution of gene-for-gene versus quantitative host resistance – pathogen aggressiveness systems; the generation and maintenance of variation in fungal pathogens; the use of pathogens in biological control; threats posed by exotic pathogens; host-pathogen interactions at the wild system-agriculture interface; and evolutionary relationships in the Uredinales (rusts). Work is carried out on a range of natural and crop host-pathogen systems and involves collaborations with universities and other research institutions in Australia, Africa, Europe and North America.


  • Burdon, J.J. (1997). The evolution of gene-for-gene interactions in natural pathosystems. In The Gene-for-Gene Relationship in Plant-Parasite Interactions, ed. I.R. Crute, E.B. Holub and J.J. Burdon, pp. 245-262, CAB International: Oxford.

  • Burdon, J.J. and Silk, J. (1997). Sources and patterns of diversity in plant pathogenic fungi. Phytopathology, 87, 664-669.

  • Espiau, C., Riviere, D., Burdon, J.J., Gartner, S., Daclinat, B., Hasan, S. and Chaboudez, P. (1998). Host-pathogen diversity in a wild system: Chondrilla juncea — Puccinia chondrillina. Oecologia, 113, 133-139.

  • Lafay B. and Burdon, J.J. (1998). Molecular diversity of rhizobia occurring on native shrubby legumes in Southeastern Australia. Applied & Environmental Microbiology, 64, 3989-3997.

  • Burdon, J.J., Thrall, P.H. and Brown, A.H.D. (1999). Resistance and virulence structure in two Linum marginale - Melampsora lini host-pathogen metapopulations with different mating systems. Evolution, 53, 704-716.

  • Ericson, L., Burdon, J.J. and Müller, W.J. (1999). Spatial and temporal dynamics of epidemics of the rust fungus Uromyces valerianae on populations of its host, Valeriana salina. Journal of Ecology,87, 649-658.

  • McDonald, B.A., Zhan, J. and Burdon, J.J. (1999). Genetic structure of Rhynchosporium secalis in Australia. Phytopathology, 89, 639-645.

  • Park, R.F., Burdon, J.J. and Jahoor, A. (1999). Evidence for somatic hybridisation in nature in Puccinia recondita f. sp. tritici of wheat. Mycological Research, 103, 715-723.

  • Thrall, P.H. and Burdon, J.J. (1999). The spatial scale of pathogen dispersal: consequences for disease dynamics and persistence. Evolutionary Ecology Research, 1, 681-701.

  • Burdon, J.J., Gibson, A.H., Searle, S.D., Woods, M. and Brockwell, J. (1999). Variation in the effectiveness of symbiotic associations between native rhizobia and temperate Australian Acacia - within species interactions. Journal of Applied Ecology, 36, 398-408.

  • Burdon, J.J. and Thrall, P.H. (1999). Spatial and temporal patterns in coevolving plant and pathogen associations. American Naturalist, 153, S15-S33.

  • Burdon, J.J. and Thrall, P.H. (2000). Coevolution at multiple spatial scales - from population to continent and beyond. Evolutionary Ecology, 14, 261-281.

  • Thrall, P.H. and Burdon, J.J. (2000). Effect of resistance variation in a natural plant host-pathogen metapopulation on disease dynamics. Plant Pathology, 49, 767-773.

  • Thrall, P.H., Burdon, J.J. and Woods, M.J. (2000). Variation in the effectiveness of symbiotic associations between native rhizobia and temperate Australian legumes: interactions within and between genera. Journal of Applied Ecology, 37, 52-65.

  • Burdon, J.J. and Thrall, P.H. (2001). The demography and genetics of host-pathogen interactions. In: Integrating ecology and evolution in a spatial context, eds Silvertown, J. and Antonovics, J., in press, Oxford, Blackwell Science

  • Thrall, P.H., Burdon, J.J. and Young, A.G. (2001). Variation in resistance and virulence among demes of a single host-pathogen metapopulation. Journal of Ecology, 89, 736-748.

  • Thrall, P.H., Burdon, J.J. & Bock, C.H. (2001). Short-term epidemic dynamics in the Cakile maritimaAlternaria brassicicola host-pathogen metapopulation association. Journal of Ecology, 89, 723-735.

  • Lafay, B. & Burdon, J.J. (2001). Small-subunit rRNA genotyping of rhizobia nodulating Australian Acacia spp. Applied & Environmental Microbiology, 67, 396-402.

  • Thrall, P.H. and Burdon, J.J. (2002). Evolution of gene-for-gene systems in metapopulations: the effect of spatial scale of host and pathogen dispersal. Plant Pathology, 51, 169-184.

  • Burdon J.J., Thrall, P.H. and Lawrence, G.J. (2002). Coevolutionary patterns in the Linum marginale – Melampsora lini association at a continental scale Canadian Journal of Botany, 80, 288-296.

  • Ericson, L., Burdon, J.J. and Müller, W.J. (2002). The rust pathogen Triphragmium ulmariae as a selective force affecting its host, Filipendula ulmaria. Journal of Ecology, 90, 167-178.


Evolution of Plant-Pathogen Associations
Plant-Microbial Associations & Restoration Ecology
Biocontrol of Weeds
Origin & Maintenance of Variation in Plant Pathogens
Ecological Risk Assessment of GMOs
Resistance to Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. vasinfectum
Disease Risk Assessment
Ecosystem Restoration