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SIMS Early Career Researchers


Dr Michael Doane 

Post-doctoral Research Associate



Prof. Justin Seymour, Prof. Martina Doblin, Prof. Peter Steinberg, Dr. Martin Ostrowski 

University Affiliation  

University of Technology, Sydney; University of New South Wales



I earned my Bachelor of Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2010 and my Ph.D in Ecology from San Diego State University and University of California, Davis in 2018. My dissertation work broadly investigated patterns of microbial diversity on the skin surface of marine fishes, including elasmobranch and teleost fishes. My research interests are in broadening our understanding for the health of marine organisms and the marine environmental through the lens of microbial life, including bacteria, archaea, and viruses.


Research at SIMS 

Marine bacterioplankton are critical for the healthy functioning of marine environments. These tiny organisms drive the majority of the marine biogeochemical cycling, influence disease occurrence of marine organisms and can account for up to > 50 % of the total marine biomass. Generally, our understanding for how microbial life is distributed in space and time, and the biotic and abiotic process that result in those changes, is limited. I am currently developing an understanding for temporal trends in bacterioplankton dynamics along the east coast of Australia. This work is a collaborative effort between the Integrated Marine Observing Systems (IMOS), Australian Microbiome Project, New South Wales government, Sydney Institute of Marine Science (SIMS), and University of Technology, Sydney to link aspects of oceanography, ecology, and microbial ecology together to refine our understanding for processes which result in changes to bacterioplankton patterns. The aim is to develop a greater understanding for how the marine environment is changing around the Australian continent. Key outcomes include identifying biotic and abiotic factors which correspond with patterns of bacterioplankton diversity for integration into ecosystem-based models and to further develop conceptual understanding for how microbial communities are assembled in marine environments.  


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