Welcome to the web pages of the laboratory of Heroen Verbruggen. I am an associate professor in the School of BioSciences at the University of Melbourne.

The lab carries out research on algal biology and coral holobiont functioning. Our broad interest in algal biology leads us to do an eclectic range of work, including biodiversity, genome biology, photophysiology, molecular phylogenetics and evolutionary biology. In our coral reef work, we use a combination of chemical imaging, environmental microbiology techniques and metagenomics to better understand how the coral holobiont functions.

The lab forms a research cluster with the laboratories of Madeleine van Oppen and Linda Blackall, as we are all interested in microbial symbioses. Between us, we have access all sorts of modern equipment for bacterial, algal and anemone culturing, microscopy, physiological and molecular work. We link with several other entities at the University of Mebourne, like the Environmental Microbiology Research Initiative and Melbourne Integrative Genomics

Please learn more about the research in the lab through the links below, who we are and what we enjoy thinking about, and have a look at this page if you want to read some of our papers.

Research Topics

Algal evolution and biodiversity

Where we try to wrap our heads around how many species of algae there are, how they are related and how they have evolved.

Algal biology and genomics

Where we figure out how algae work and have adapted to their environment, both at the level of their physiology and their genomes.

Coral holobiont biology

Where we ask ourselves the question how this complex holobiont of animal, prokaryotes and unicellular eukaryotes functions.