Who we are


Dr Cheong Xin Chan (CX)

PhD (Genomics & Computational Biology), UQ
Senior Research Officer, Institute for Molecular Bioscience
Affiliate Lecturer, School of Chemistry and Molecular Bioscience
c.chan [at] imb.uq.edu.au
P +61-7-33462617
F +61-7-33462101

I have a broad interest in evolutionary genomics, particularly of microbial eukaryotes. A focus of my current research is on the evolutionary transition of dinoflagellates from free-living to symbionts critical to coral reefs. I am interested in developing scalable, alignment-free phylogenomic approaches, and the use of cutting-edge genomic technologies to quickly infer evolutionary histories of thousands of microbial genomes. At UQ I also teach in a number of courses in genomics and bioinformatics. For more information, see my research profile and my teaching profile.

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Postgraduate students

Raúl A. González-Pech

Master of Ecology, Evolution & Systematics, LMU München, Germany
PhD candidate, Institute for Molecular Bioscience
r.gonzalezpech [at] imb.uq.edu.au

My major research interest is the evolution of coral-dinoflagellate symbiosis. I currently compare genomes of different isolates within the genus Symbiodinium (clade A) looking for signatures of the evolutionary transition from a free-living to a symbiotic lifestyle. I am also interested in the application of large-scale analysis approaches (such as the ‘-omics’) to get a big picture of the processes driving evolution of symbiosis.

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Timothy G. Stephens

BBiotech (First Class Honours), UQ
PhD candidate, Institute for Molecular Bioscience
E: timothy.stephens [at] imb.uq.edu.au

My major research focus is on exploring the genome features of free-living dinoflagellates. I am currently investigating the genome and transcriptome of Polarella glacialis, a free-living psychrophilic dinoflagellate, that is one of the sister groups to Symbiodiniaceae.

Sarah Shah

MSc (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology), Dalhousie University, Canada
PhD candidate, Institute for Molecular Bioscience
E: sarah.shah [at] uqconnect.edu.au

I am interested in the evolutionary transition of free-living organisms into parasitic or symbiotic lifestyles in various microbiomes such as the animal gut or coral reefs. I am currently investigating the genomes of Symbiodiniaceae isolated from the Great Barrier Reef to identify what led them to colonize sea animals, and what drives them to leave their hosts.

Yibi Chen

Master of Agricultural Extension (Horticulture), Yunnan University
Master of Bioinformatics student, Institute for Molecular Bioscience
E: yibi.chan [at] uq.net.au

Pierre Youssef

Master of Bioinformatics student, Institute for Molecular Bioscience
E: p.youssef [at] uq.net.au

Maika Matsumoto

Master of Bioinformatics student, Institute for Molecular Bioscience
E: m.matsumoto [at] uq.net.au

Research volunteers

Clarisse Louvard

PhD candidate, School of Biological Sciences
E: clarisse.louvard [at] uqconnect.edu.au

Christopher Wrona

E: christopher.wrona [at] uqconnect.edu.au