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+64 3 3695351
I am a microbiology lecturer/ assistant professor at the School of Biological Sciences and associate investigator at the Biomolecular Interaction Centre (BIC), University of Canterbury, New Zealand, focussing on microbial ecology, specifically on plant-microbe interactions and investigation of bacteria at the single-cell resolution. In my lab, we are mainly interested how bacterial species grow on plant leaves (the phyllosphere), which growth pattern they exhibit and how they interact with other species that share the leaf with them. To do so, we mostly rely on fluorescence microscopy techniques such as confocal laser scanning microscopy and widefield epifluorescence microscopy. This in combination with bacteria that are either tagged with fluorescent protein genes, stained using fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH), or stained using fluorescent live/dead stains that allow to determine if individual bacterial cells are either alive or dead. To analyse our data we employ image cytometry and spatial statistic tools which allow us to assess pair aggregation patterns of leaf colonising bacteria.Since many leaf colonising bacteria cannot be used with the molecular toolbox available for E. coli and other model bacteria, a lot of research time in my lab is dedicated to adapt existing tools to make environmental bacteria more tractable to genetic manipulation and to effectively "make them shine".