Susanne von Caemmerer

Australian National University

Canberra, ACT

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  • Mentoring


Professor Susanne von Caemmerer is the Deputy Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Translational Photosynthesis at The Australian National University. She is internationally renowned for her research on photosynthetic modelling, analysis of photosynthesis and stomatal function by genetic manipulation, and stable isotope fractionation in plants. Susanne obtained her BA (Honours) in Pure Mathematics in 1976 at the Australian National University (ANU) and her PhD in Plant Physiology in 1981, also at ANU. She was elected to the German Academy of Science Leopoldina in 2006 and as a fellow of the Australian Academy of Science in the same year. She is also a member of the C4 Rice Consortium, a group multidisciplinary scientist from around the world working together to discover genes that will supercharge photosynthesis in rice to boost food production in the developing world. Susanne won the prestigious Charles F. Kettering award by the American Society of Plant Biologists in 2014 and she was awarded the Charles Reid Barnes Life Membership award by the same institution in 2017. Originally trained in pure mathematics, she has worked across scales in biochemistry, molecular biology and whole plant physiology combining mathematical modelling approaches with experimental verification. Susanne von Caemmerer co-developed what is arguably the most widely used biochemical model in plant biology the Farquhar, von Caemmerer and Berry model of C3 photosynthesis. She then went on to develop an equally widely used model of C4 photosynthesis. Currently she is working on photosynthesis and stomatal function, with an emphasis on the mathematical modelling of the carbon acquisition of plants, the biochemistry of carbon dioxide fixation and regulation of carbon dioxide diffusion in leaves, leading the way toward resolving anomalies around the critical issue of mesophyll conductance.