Olwen M. Grace, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, AC4

Olwen M. Grace, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, AC4


Position: Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, United Kingdom

Email: O.Grace@kew.org

Co-suprvisor for project ESR5: Phylogenetic exploration of antitumor compounds in the giant genus Euphorbia L.

My research focuses on the evolution of succulent plants in the world’s deserts and dryland floras, where changing climates will influence the future value of arid-adapted plants.

I study the patterns and processes which gave rise to the extraordinary diversity of forms among succulent plants. I’m interested in applying evolutionary hypotheses to understand patterns in the useful characteristics of plants, such as modified photosynthetic pathways and water-storing tissues typical of succulent plants. I use the same approach to examine the ways in which people value plants, and how these patterns might inform decision making for research or novel uses in future.


Why did you find it important to be part of MedPlant?
MedPlant is a unique opportunity to be part of a large, multifaceted research effort to break new ground in understanding the world’s medicinal plant diversity.

What do you hope to gain/achieve as part of MedPlant?
I’m excited the MedPlant scholarly community; the scope of the research allows us to work across disciplines and challenge our thinking about how and why medicinal plants are valuable