Regina "Reggie" Billones-Baaijens is currently employed as a Post Doctoral Research Fellow at the NWGIC. She completed her PhD in Plant Pathology at Lincoln University, New Zealand in 2011, a Masters degree in Applied Science at Massey University in 1999 and a Masters degree in Plant Pathology, minor in Molecular Biology at the University of the Philippines – Los Baños in 2005. Her PhD research focused on the role of nurseries in the spread of Botryosphaeria dieback in New Zealand vineyards. This disease is considered a serious problem of grapevines worldwide causing cankers, dieback and eventually death of vines. Prior to her employment as Post Doctoral Research fellow at the NWGIC, she worked as a Tutor in the Ecology Department at Lincoln University, New Zealand. This involved the delivery of lectures for undergraduate diploma courses and managing laboratory classes for Fungal Biology, Plant Protection and Molecular Biology undergraduate subjects. She also provided technical assistance to postgraduate students and contributed to the research programmes in the Plant Microbiology Group at Lincoln University.
Specialisation: Plant Pathology, molecular diagnostics, disease management, plant-disease interactions
Focus Area: Grapevine trunk disease – epidemiology and control strategies
Reggie is currently working with Dr. Sandra Savocchia on the Practical Management of Eutypa and botryosphaeria dieback in vineyards. This is a collaborative project with researchers at the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI) and is funded by the Grape and Wine Research and Development Corporation (GWRDC). Eutypa and botryosphaeria dieback are fungal diseases that cause yield reduction, vine decline and eventual death of grapevines and are considered serious threats to the sustainability of the Australian wine industry. The aim of the research project is to investigate the epidemiology along with development of efficient methods for pruning wound management and control of these trunk disease pathogens.
Billones-Baaijens R., Jones, E.E., Ridgway, H.J., Jaspers, M.V. (2014). Susceptibility of common rootstock and scion grapevine varieties in New Zealand to Botryosphaeriaceae species. Australasian Plant Pathology 43, 25-31.
Billones-Baaijens, R., Jones, E. E., Ridgway, H. J., & Jaspers, M. V. (2013). Virulence affected by assay parameters during grapevine pathogenicity studies with Botryosphaeriaceae nursery isolates. Plant Pathology 62, 1214-1225.
Billones-Baaijens, R., Ridgway, H. J., Jones, E. E., Cruickshank, R.H. & Jaspers, M. V. (2013). Prevalence and distribution of Botryosphaeriaceae species in New Zealand grapevine nurseries. European Journal of Plant Pathology, 135, 175-185.
Billones-Baaijens, R., Ridgway, H. J., Jones, E. E., & Jaspers, M. V. (2013). Inoculum sources of Botryosphaeriaceae species in New Zealand grapevine nurseries. European Journal of Plant Pathology, 135, 159-174.
Billones-Baaijens, R., Jones, E. E., Ridgway, H. J., & Jaspers, M. V. (2012). Pathogenicity of New Zealand grapevine isolate of Neofusicoccum macroclavatum on Eucalyptus globulus. New Zealand Plant Protection, 65, 262-266.
Billones, R. G., Ridgway, H. J., Jones, E. E., & Jaspers, M. V. (2010). First report of Neofusicoccum macroclavatum as a canker pathogen of grapevine in New Zealand. Plant Disease, 94 (12), 1504.
Billones-Baaijens, R., Ridgway, H. J., Jones, E. E., & Jaspers, M. V. (2014) Spatial distribution of Neofusicoccum species within a rootstock mothervine indicates potential infection pathways. European Plant Pathology Journal (In press)