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The University of Southampton
Institute for Life Sciences

Cathryn Quick 2016 - 2020, 

Postgraduate research student

Cathryn Quick's Photo

Mechanisms of extreme temperature tolerance of reef corals revealed by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy

Interdisciplinary approaches will be crucial as we seek to understand how organisms respond to ever increasing environmental pressures. This project will equip me with the skills and lateral thinking needed to tackle these environmental challenges

I completed an MSci in Marine Biology at the University of Southampton, with my third year spent at the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW). While at UNCW I took part in a research trip to Curacao, where we used SCUBA to investigate the damage of overfishing on coral reefs. This project sparked my interest in coral reef ecology, and I witnessed first hand why these ecosystems need protecting. My MSci research focused on the photoprotective role of fluorescent proteins in reef building corals. This project developed my interest in molecular biology, and I am now investigating the molecular mechanisms of temperature tolerance in reef corals using NMR spectroscopy.

In my PhD project, I will be using both the mesocosm coral systems in the Coral Reef Laboratory at the National Oceanography Centre Southampton, and the NMR Spectroscopy Facility at Highfield Campus.

As climate change continues to threaten reef ecosystems worldwide, we must further our understanding of coral stress physiology to facilitate sustainable coral reef management decisions. Interdisciplinary projects such as this one, have a high potential to provide novel insights to promote this process.

Location: NOCS/566/13, Ocen and Earth Science, University of Southampton Waterfront Campus.

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