Dr Messer is a marine microbial ecologist with a passion for understanding how the structure and function of microbial assemblages impacts the health of marine ecosystems. She was a postdoctoral research fellow within Prof. Gene Tyson's group researching the utilisation of genome-resolved metagenomics to interrogate the complexities of the coral microbiome. Dr Messer left the Centre at the beginning of 2020 to join Gene in the formation of a new Centre for Microbiome Research at Queensland University of Technology.
Local and global anthropogenic pressures threaten the future of coral reefs. While reef restoration efforts are under development, a fundamental gap in our understanding of coral health and resilience to thermal stress is the functional role of the microbiome. Our research aims to address this knowledge gap through ultra-deep metagenomic sequencing, to aid the recovery of bacterial, archaeal and viral genomes from corals tissues for phylogenetic and functional characterisation.