Current research

I use advanced computational and database approaches to investigate microbial genomes and their evolution.


Genome sequencing of coral reef symbionts

De novo genome sequencing and analysis of the dinoflagellate Symbiodinium, as part of the Reef Future Genomics (ReFuGe) 2020 Consortium’s Sea-quence Project. The Project aims to generate core genetic data of the Great Barrier Reef and Red Sea to help guiding the management responses in the face of climate change. The Consortium is convened by the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, and supported by funding from BioPlatforms Australia, Rio Tinto and a family foundation.

Key collaborating institutions:



Scalable phylogenomics using alignment-free methods

Highly scalable phylogenomic approaches are needed to make evolutionary sense of the on-going deluge of sequence data. I am exploring the use of alignment-free methods in large-scale phylogenetic inference.

Key collaborators:



Lateral genetic transfer as a driver of microbial ecology and evolution

I am interested in the innovation of microbial genomes due to adaptation, both in short-term e.g. development of antibiotic-resistance in bacteria, and in long term e.g. microbial adaptation to extreme environments, as well as the dynamics of genome evolution as impacted by endosymbiosis.

Key collaborators: