Ms Dee Twiddy

MSc student


Biochemistry, Genetics and Microbiology
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Primary Supervisor
Gerda Fourie

Co Supervisor
Arista Fourie
Olufemi Akinsanmi

I first started my journey in FABI in the final year of my undergrad in the CTHB Mentorship Programme. The following year I complete my Honours in Microbiology in FABI under the guidance of Dr. Gerda Fourie researching the potential impact the dominant fungal symbiont (Fusarium euwallaceae) of a newly invasive beetle, the Polyphagous Shothole Borer (PSHB), may have on macadamia in South Africa.

I am now a MSc candidate in Microbiology working on husk rot of macadamia. Husk rot in a fungal disease causing soft black lesions on mature macadamia nuts. This compromise in nut quality, leading to yield loss, and the sporadic nature of husk rot incidence in orchards has resulted in the disease being of concern to growers for a number of years. My research aims to understand the epidemiology of the fungi causing husk rot in South Africa.


Tree planting day for the Mad Macs team

On Tuesday 20 April, members of the Macadamia Protection Programme (MPP) in FABI planted approximatively 300 macadamia trees from various different cultivars that are grown commercially by the industry.

Polyphagous Shot Hole Borer online resource

The PSHB Research Network in FABI has been at the forefront of research and field extension work, and to this end has created an online resource for use by both the public and academia.

Macadamia research program’s field visit to Mpumalanga

The Macadamia Protection Program (MPP) is back in the field! MPP research group leader Dr Gerda Fourie, joined by MSc candidate Dee Twiddy and PhD candidate Elisa Pal travelled to the Mpumalanga area during the week of 9 February.

FABI hosts a virtual SASPP Symposium

On 20 January, FABI had the pleasure of hosting a virtual congress of the South African Society of Plant Pathologists’ (SASPP).

FABI researchers attend the International Macadamia R&D Conference in China

The annual International Macadamia R&D Conference was held in Lincang City, Yunnan, China from 5-9 November. Macadamia Protection Programme research leader Dr Gerda Fourie and FABI postdoctoral Fellow Dr Arista Fourie joined 300 delegates from 12 countries, consisting mostly of senior researchers, institute directors and consultants.

Export to RIS
Twiddy D, Fell S, de Beer ZW, Fourie G. (2021) Screening for susceptibility of Macadamia to E. fornicatus and its fungal symbiont Fusarium euwallaceae. Plant Disease 105(4):739-742. 10.1094/PDIS-07-20-1555-SC
Export to RIS
Twiddy D, de Beer ZW, Fourie G. (2020) The PSHB and its potential impact on the South African macadamia Industry. SAMAC Journal PDF