Viruses and Coral Development

In collaboration with the Miller and Leggat labs at James Cook University as well as with Misha Matz’s lab at University of Texas at Austin, we are attempting to determine the effects of marine viruses on coral development. By isolating and purifying viruses from above healthy and diseased corals, adding them to various stages of coral development, and monitoring the larvae for developmental and settlement rates, we can provide a clear link between viral infection and reduced development and settlement rate as well as post settlement survival. Further we are evaluating the gene expression patterns that result in the exposed larvae after exposure to the viruses.