Dr Tatiana Soares da Costa


Dr Tatiana Soares da Costa

Plant biochemist

University of Adelaide

If your backyard is anything like mine, weeds are setting up home everywhere. This is not only happening in our backyards, but also in farms in Australia and worldwide. Weeds outcompete crops for resources, reducing the quality and size of harvests. We rely on herbicides to control weeds, but they are now failing as weeds have become resistant to their effects.

Dr Tatiana Soares da Costa leads a multi-disciplinary research team dedicated to discovering new herbicides that are less prone to developing resistance. She is devoted to ensuring farmers can produce enough food to feed a growing population.

Originally coming from a medical field, the shift to working in agriculture might not look straight-forward. Tatiana transitioned to plant biochemistry by applying lessons she had learnt from tackling antibiotic resistance in superbugs to herbicide resistance in weeds. Since being awarded a PhD in 2013, Tatiana has held a lecturing position, and NHMRC and ARC fellowships. She is now a Future Making Fellow at the University of Adelaide.

Tatiana is passionate about making science accessible to all by engaging with STEM professionals, politicians, students, community and media, culminating in being named the 2022 SA Young Tall Poppy Scientist of the Year.