Doctor Eleonora Egidi

Eleonora Egidi joined the HIE in February 2018 as a research fellow within the Soil Biology & Genomics research theme. During her previous postdoctoral experience at La Trobe University she investigated the soil-plant-microbe relationships in temperate grasslands, focussing on both individual- and community- level associations. Her work on the connection between fire management and fungal community composition in Southern Australia grassy ecosystems was the first study of this kind for this biome, despite temperate grasslands being amongst Australia’s most endangered vegetation communities. By combining state of the art technologies (NGS) with molecular barcoding principles, she also explored the distribution linkage between a critically endangered Victorian orchid, Diuris fragrantissima, and its associated mycorrhizal fungi. This work provided the foundation for the development of a molecular-based protocol to monitor the occurrence of important orchid mycorrhizal fungi in situ, and design targeted conservation strategies for this and other rare orchids. Eleonora is also the co-convenor of the newly established Plant-Soil Ecology Research Chapter within the Ecological Society of Australia.

Her current research aims at understanding environmental microbiome ecology, with a focus on the mechanisms that generate the diversity of microbes in soil, particularly in response to environmental stressors. Disentangling the processes and drivers responsible for maintaining microbial function and composition in soil is pivotal to develop better predictions on the effects of environmental changes at the whole ecosystem level.

Grants
  • 2017 Oh brother, where art thou? Distribution patterns and characterization of Tulasnella spp. associated with two related Australian orchid species, Diuris fragrantissima and Diuris punctata; Co-funded project: Australian Orchid Foundation and Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (Port Phillip Region) ($12,000)
  • 2016 Working together: Fungal-plant interactions for improved removal of hydrocarbon contamination from soils La Trobe University China Studies Research Centre ($9,000)
  • 2016 Egidi, E., May T., Franks, A.E. Assessing a metabarcoding protocol for the recovery of Tulasnella spp. associated with the highly endangered orchid Diuris fragrantissima; Co-funded project: Australian Orchid Foundation and Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (Port Phillip Region) ($14.450)
  • 2015 Testing the potential of next generation sequencing for the detection of Tulasnella species associated with the endangered orchid species Diuris fragrantissima; Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (Port Phillip Region) ($3,000)
  • 2015 Delving into the dark ecology: how do prescribed fires affect soil microbial community diversity and dynamics in temperate grassy ecosystems? La Trobe Securing Food Water Environment RFA grant ($47,000)
Selected publications

Egidi E, Franks A, (2018) 'Incorporating fungal community ecology into invasion biology: challenges and opportunities', Microbiology Australia, (in press)

Coleine C, Stajich JE, Zucconi L, Onofri S, Pombubpa N, Egidi E, Franks A, Buzzini P, Selbmann L, (2018) 'Antarctic Cryptoendolithic Fungal Communities Are Highly Adapted and Dominated by Lecanoromycetes and Dothideomycetes', Frontiers in Microbiology, vol.9, Article no.1392

Egidi E, May TW, Franks AE, (2018) 'Seeking the needle in the haystack: Undetectability of mycorrhizal fungi outside of the plant rhizosphere associated with an endangered Australian orchid', Fungal Ecology, vol.33, pp 13-23

Wijayawardene NN, Hyde KD, Rajeshkumar KC, Hawksworth DL, Madrid H, Kirk PM, Braun U, Singh RV, Crous PW, Kukwa M, Lücking R, Kurtzman CP, Yurkov A, Haelewaters D, Aptroot A, Thorsten Lumbsch H, Timdal E, Ertz D, Etayo J, Phillips AJL, Groenewald JZ, Papizadeh M, Selbmann L, Dayarathne MC, Weerakoon G, Gareth Jones EB, Suetrong S, Tian Q, Castañeda-Ruiz RF, Bahkali AH, Pang K-L, Tanaka K, Dai DQ, Sakayaroj J, Hujslová M, Lombard L, Shenoy BD, Suija A, Maharachchikumbura SSN, Thambugala KM, Wanasinghe DN, Sharma BO, Gaikwad S, Pandit G, Zucconi L, Onofri S, Egidi E, Raja HA, Kodsueb R, Cáceres MES, Pérez-Ortega S, Fiuza PO, Santana Monteiro J, Vasilyeva LN, Shivas RG, Prieto M, Wedin M, Olariaga I, Azeez Lateef A, Agrawal Y, Shahzadeh Fazeli SA, Amoozegar MA, Zhao GZ, Pfliegler WP, Sharma G, Oset M, Abdel-Wahab MA, Takamatsu S, Bensch K, de Silva NI, De Kesel A, Karunarathna A, Boonmee S, Pfister DH, Lu Y-Z, Luo Z-L, Boonyuen N, Daranagama DA, Senanayake IC, Jayasiri SC, Samarakoon MC, Zeng X-Y, Doilom M, Quijada L, Rampadarath S, Heredia G, Dissanayake AJ, Jayawardana RS, Perera RH, Zhou Tang L, Phukhamsakda C, Hernández-Restrepo M, Ma X, Tibpromma S, Gusmao LFP, Weerahewa D, Karunarathna SC, (2017) 'Notes for genera – Ascomycota', Fungal Diversity, vol.86, no.1, pp 1-594

Wood J, Franks A, Egidi E, (2017) 'Linking microscopic interactions with macroscopic effects', Journal of Vegetation Science, vol.28, no.3, pp 462-463

Egidi E, McMullan-Fisher S, Morgan J, May T, Zeeman B, Franks A, (2016) 'Fire regime, not time-since-fire, affect soil fungal community diversity and composition in temperate grasslands', FEMS Microbiology Letters, vol.363, no.17, fnw196

Stielow JB,  Lévesque CA, Seifert KA, Meyer W, Iriny L, Smits D, Renfurm R, Verkley GJM, Groenewald M, Chaduli D, Lomascolo A, Welti S, Lesage-Meessen L, Favel A, Al-Hatmi AMS, Damm U, Yilmaz N, Houbraken J, Lombard L, Quaedvlieg W, Binder M, Vaas LAT, Vu D, Yurkov A, Begerow D, Roehl O, Guerreiro M, 12  Fonseca A, Samerpitak K, van Diepeningen AD, Dolatabadi S, Moreno LF, Casaregola S, Mallet S, Jacques N, Roscini L, Egidi E, Bizet C, Garcia-Hermoso D, Martín MP, Deng S, Groenewald JZ, Boekhout T, de Beer ZW, Barnes I, Duong TA, Wingfield MJ, de Hoog GS, Crous PW, Lewis CT, Hambleton S, Moussa TAA, Al-Zahrani HS, Almaghrabi OA, Louis-Seize G, Assabgui R, McCormick W, Omer G, Dukik K, Cardinali G, Eberhardt U, de Vries M, Robert V, (2015) 'One fungus, which genes? Development and assessment of universal primers for potential secondary fungal DNA barcodes', Persoonia - Molecular Phylogeny and Evolution of Fungi, vol.35, pp 242-263

Egidi E, de Hoog GS, Isola D, Onofri S, Quaedvlieg W, de Vries M, Verkley GJM, Stielow JB, Zucconi L, Selbmann L, (2014) 'Phylogeny and taxonomy of meristematic rock-inhabiting black fungi in the Dothideomycetes based on multi-locus phylogenies', Fungal Diversity, vol.65, no.1, pp 127-165

Selbmann L, Isola D, Egidi E, Zucconi L, Gueidan C, de Hoog GS, Onofri S, (2014) 'Mountain tips as reservoir for new rock-fungal entities: Saxomyces gen. nov. and four new species from the Alps', Fungal Diversity, vol.65, no.1, pp 167-182

Selbmann L, Egidi E, Isola D, Onofri S, Zucconi L, De Hoog GS, Chinaglia S, Testa L, Tosi S, Balestrazzi A, Lantieri A, Compagno R, Tigini V, Varese GC, (2013) 'Biodiversity, evolution and adaptation of fungi in extreme environments', Plant Biosystems, vol.147, no.1, pp 237-246

Genome Announcements

E. Egidi, J.L. Wood, E.M. Fox, W. Liu, A.E. Franks (2017) Draft genome sequence of Leifsonia sp. NCR5, a rhizobacterium isolated from a cadmium-contaminated soil. Genome Announcements 5.23 (2017): e00520-17

E. Egidi, J.L. Wood, S. Aracic, R. Kannan, L.  McDonald, C. Bell, E.M. Fox, W. Liu, A.E. Franks (2016) Draft genome sequence of Enterobacter ludwigii NCR3, a heavy-metal resistant rhizobacterium. Genome Announcements 4(5), e01076-16

E. Egidi, J.L. Wood, S. Mathews E., E.M. Fox, W. Liu, A.E. Franks (2016) Draft genome sequence of Bacillus cereus LCR12, a plant growth promoting rhizobacterium isolated from a heavy metal contaminated environment. Genome Announcements 4(5), e01041-16

E. Egidi, J.L. Wood, E.M. Fox, W. Liu, A.E. Franks (2016) Draft genome of Rhodococcus erythropolis NSX2, an Actinobacterium isolated from a cadmium contaminated environment. Genome Announcements 4(5), e01147-16