I am interested in the study of evolutionary processes such as sexual selection or immune response on the molecular/protein scale. To do this I
use several social insects as model species and biochemical technologies such as proteomics.
Sociobiology, Evolutionary biology, Sexual selection, Proteomics
I am interested in improving the interaction between science and honeybee related industries.
My particular passion is in bee breeding and disease management.
As apiary manager I am responsible for maintenance and breeding of our honeybee colonies to support
the myriad experiments being undertaken by our team.
I study social insect reproduction and immunity and run the CIBER honeybee lab.
I am also in the organizing committee of the annual Honey Festival in the Swan Valley,
and organise the bee exhibition at the Royal Show. I organise screenings of the movie "More than Honey" and run the
More than Honey Blog and the
Facebook page of CIBER
My research interests focus on the coevolution and ecology of host-parasite interactions. In particular,
I am interested to understand strategies of host defences and the dynamics of infectious diseases in social insects.
My research focuses on proteomics and the use of mass spectrometry to understand metabolic networks
in a range of species. In CIBER I provide the background and experimental design for honeybee proteomic
projects and work to increase our understanding of the molecular mechanisms that influence
reproductive success and disease resistance.
Proteomics, Mass spectrometry, Functional genomics
I am an economist interested in the economics of beekeeping and the role of bees in plant
pollination and food production. At CIBER I am supervising research projects that
focuses on the link between evolution by natural selection and economic growth.
I analyse protein samples of honeybees and other social insects on protein gels and by using
a variety of different mass spectrometers. I specialize in quantitative proteomics and
mass spectrometry, and apply this to identify immunopeptides in the haemolymph and
seminal fluid of honeybees.
Proteomics, Mass Spectrometry, Peptidomics, SDS PAGE gel, DIGE
I am interested to understand how immune and reproductive systems of social insects operate and interact on the molecular level.
To do this I use proteomics as well as field-based experiments. I am specifically interested to
understand how differences in immune-related and/or reproduction-related proteins between individuals or colonies translates into
differences in their ability to reproduce and/or to resist to infections.
Proteomics, Immunopeptides, Evolutionary Biology, Sexual Selection
I am interested in the development of disease treatments for honeybees based on nano-sized
drug formulations. Several drug candidates are being investigated as treatment for
Nosema apis to test the potency of the drugs as well as the benefits
Nanotechnology, Drug formulation, Drug nano-sizing and characterisation, Drug development
I use the honeybee Apis mellifera as a model system to search for the cellular mechanisms that must underlie
magnetorecpetion in bees, basically a type of biological GPS that allows bees to navigate short or long distances. To do this
I use the latest available microscopic technologies available at the Centre for Microscopy, Characterisation and Analysis
Visiting Research Fellow, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences
My research focuses on the qualification and quantification of xenobiotics and endogenous
components in honeybees and their products using instruments such as LC-MS/MS, LC-HRMS
and GC-MS. To do this, I extract small molecules from honeybees or their products and then
quantify them which helps to evaluate their quality and safety, and to further our understanding
of their physiological properties
I am interested whether Darwinian evolutionary dynamics in human populations played a role in the
emergence of today's economic systems. To do this I use modelling approaches in combination with
data available on human income, assets and fertility around the onset of industrialisation, when
several human populations left the Malthusian trap.
Economics, Modelling, Mathusian trap, Population biology
I am interested in the identification of cellulose-degrading bacteria in termite guts. There is a great
interest in this field currently due to its potential application in the production of cleaner,
renewable sources of energy, such as biofuels.To do this, I culture the gut bacteria of two local
termite species and use metagenomics to sequence the microbial population in the gut, in the hopes of finding
novel cellulase genes.
I am interested to understand the intimate relationship between the honeybee immune system
and one of the most widespread bee pathogens, Nosema apis. I investigate whether
different genotypes of bees differ in their level of resistance against different strains of Nosema.
I am an artist, curator, and researcher. My research focuses on interspecies relationships,
and considers the concepts of both the ‘host’ and the ‘parasite’ within the broader
context of honeybees in relation to theories of hospitality and environmental
I am interested in how environmental factors such as parasites, pesticides and nutrition affect the fertility
of males and queens in honey bees and leaf cutter ants. My aim is to understand those molecules that determine sperm quality
and sperm competitiveness or allow sperm to be stored for years to decades. To do this I am
developing novel methods that allow me to observe and measure sperm swimming speed of social insect sperm.
Proteomics, CASA, Sperm viability, Postcopulatory sexual selection
My goal is to breed honeybees with increased disease resistance. To do this, I am researching
host-parasite interactions between honey bees in Western Australia and the widespread
fungal pathogen Nosema apis. I investigate whether there are different Nosema apis
strains and whether honey bees lineages vary in their tolerance to these pathogen strains.
Host Parasit Interactions, Field work, Flow cytometry
I investigate the potential of bee venom as an anti-cancer agent. To do this, I extract venom
from honey bee workers and then use purified samples to quantify their effect on breast cancer
cell lines. The cellular response is measured in terms of venom potency and specificity.
This project is conducted in collaboration with Pilar Blancafort and Killugudi Swaminatha Iyer.
Anatomy, Human Biology, Physiology
Senacyt PhD student
I am interested to find out how different stressors affecting honeybee colonies add up and
whether a combination of them are capable to induce a phenomenon that is of the referred to as colony collapse diorder.
I am specifically interested to find out whether there are early signs of colony collapse, which could be used
in the future by beekeepers to manage the heath of their bees.
I am interested to identify and study those molecules that mediate post-copulatory
sexual selection in fungus-growing ants and honeybees, for example proteins present in ejaculates that
allow males to outcompete their rivals. As part of this I study whether honey bee drones manipulate
honeybee queen physiology and behaviour after mating through molecular components in their seminal fluid that manipulate the queens brain.
Sexual selection, Comparative Protoemics, Transcriptomics, Sperm Competition,
Future Bees Fellow
I investigate how agricultural pesticides affect drone health and fertility when they have to
deal with additional stressors such as disease at the same time. To test this I feed male bees
pesticide contaminated pollen and also expose some of them to the fungal disease Nosema apis.
Behavioural Ecology, Zoology, Ethology
I develop a method for using flow cytometry to assess the viability
of ‘dissected’ honeybee sperm (sperm collected through dissection of the accessory testes
rather than ejaculation). The ability to rapidly and reliably quantify sperm
viability will allow us to further study the honeybee’s evolution of sexual warfare through
controlled sperm competition experiments. By providing the tools to study sperm incapacitation
in greater detail, I aim to improve the viability of honeybee sperm used for artificial
insemination and thus the success of breeding programs.
Conservation Biology, Zoology, Pesticides, Field Work
My research project explores whether spores of the fungal honeybee disease Nosema apis
survive exposure to immune proteins that are presentin the seminal fluid of honeybees.
I am furthermore interested to see whether these surviving sores are still capable to infect
healthy bees and whether spore survival differs between different strains of Nosema
I conduct field experiments to test whether male honeybees (drones) respond to Nosema apis
infections by altering their mating activities.To do this I track drone flying behaviour
using radio frequency identification tags that are glued to bees and compare the flying patterns
between infected and non infected animals.
Behavioural Ecology, Host Parasite Interactions, RFID technology
I am interested in finding novel and innovative ways to control honeybee diseases. To do this
I am investigating the use of nanotechnology on a natural drug (thymol) against a honeybee gut
pathogen, Nosema apis. The effects of the nano sized thymol on the number of pathogenic
spores will be compared to that of regular thymol.
"My research project addresses the effect of a Nosema apis infection on the behaviour and
fertility of drones by utilising radio frequency identification (RFID)tags to track drone flying behaviour.
This project will investigate the behavioural strategies that drones may have adopted to
prevent further spread of N. apis infection"
Bee diseases, Conservation Biology, Fertility
I am interested in determining whether we can define "Happy Bees" in scientific terms. To do this,
I am studying different hive designs used by beekeepers (Langstroth and Warre hives) and comparing
how colonies develop and perform in them over a year. Furthermore, I am looking into whether
ecological stresses such as parasites differentially affect bees, depending on the type of hives they are kept in.
Hive management, Bee health and resilience
My research aims to identify and characterise the cellular structures involved in honey bee
magnetoreception. This involves the isolation and concentration of inorganic material extracted
from honey bees in order to perform magnetic and microscopic analysis.
Microscopy, Morphology, Magneto Reception
I am studying genotype genotype interactions between the European honeybee Apis mellifera
and the fungal parasite Nosema apis. I am interested to quantify the response of male bees
to different strains of Nosema spores and comparing those between individuals and colonies.
I have been given the opportunity to undertake a research placement with CIBER where I will
work alongside Marck Norret and Genevieve Woods in their research on honeybee diseases.
In doing so, I will be able to apply my studies in Biochemistry and Maths and be
exposed to the theory and practice of research.
Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Mathematics
I am interested in honey bee disease management and circumstances/diseases that relate to
global honeybee population decline in particular. This interest has led me to assisting
Marck Norret and Genevieve Woods in research relating to disease management.
My work is focused on public engagement with honeybees. I am also interested in alternative hive
architecture and the aesthetics of urban beekeeping. As part of my work I design logos,
posters and labels for the CIBER group. To see some of my work
click here. My projects are run in collaboration with
Graphic Design, information design, illustration, photography, honeybee fieldwork
I coordinate the Western Australian Bee-breeding Program known as
Better Bees that aims to maintain high quality bees
for the Western Australian beekeeping industry. In an annual breeding program on Rottnest Island we
ensure the successful continuation of our 24 lines of honey bees.
Honeybees from these lineages are used for scientific experiments running at CIBER.
I am a commercial apiarist operating 800 honeybee colonies. I have 35 years of experience in bee
breeding, industry knowledge and involvement
I am interested in combining the different perspectives of art and science. To do this, I explore
interactions between humans and both native bees as well as feral honeybees, and study the ecological
importance of that relationship as well as the places where such interactions occur.
Ecological art, Cross cultural and interspecies relationships
I directed a documentary about honeybees with the title "More than Honey"
The movie provides fascinating visual insights into the life of a honeybee colony. The movie is currently
shown in movie theatres and at movie festivals around the world.
Screenplay, Dramaturgy, High speed and macro filming, Digital postproduction