Lab members

Current lab members

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Mark Somerville

Research associate – Engineering new GFPs and green fluorescent bacteria

Scott Mitchell

PhD Student – Equine hindgut microbiota and antibiotic resistance

Nick Yang

PhD student – Monooxgenases for biocatalysis

Claudia Moratti

PhD student – Engineering hydrocarbon biosensors

Brodie Gillieatt

PhD student – Heavy metal plasmids

Amos Anderson

Hons student – Heterologous expression of psilocybin genes

Marcus Chung

Research assistant

Benj Gonzaga

Hons student – New genetic tools for cyanobacteria

Past lab members

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Nicole Groves

PhD student – Chemoenzymatic synthesis of new antibiotics

Naomi Jones

Honours student – Creating a synthetic DCA degrader

Daniele la Cecilia

PhD student – Glyphosate biodegradation in microcosms

Neil Wilson

Postdoc – Cloning monooxygenase gene clusters from Mycobacterium spp

Margaret Migocki

Postdoc – Heterologous expression of monooxygenases

Deb Rich

Research Assistant – Plant/microbe interactions

Elissa Liew

Research assistant -Transcriptomics analysis of hydrocarbon oxidation in Mycobacterium

Jake Munro

Research assistant – Mapping organochlorine biodegradation genes in groundwater

Yanwei Ma

PhD student – Metabolic engineering in Bacillus

Nga Le

PhD student – Bioremediation of organochlorines using Mycobacterium NBB4

Sam Cheung

PhD student – Biocatalysis for epoxide synthesis using monooxygenases

Alicia Gestal

PhD student – Devlopment of synthetic gene cassettes for detecting integron activity

Mai Anh Ly

PhD student – Heterologous expression of ethene monooxygenase

Alex Baume

PhD student -Development of probiotic and antibiotic scaffolds

Michelle Ong

Grad Dip student – Engineering E.coli for dichloroethane biodegradation

Taylor Weetman

Grad Dip student – Expression of cytochrome p450 in E.coli

Frances Escobar

Honours student – Reconstruction of dichloroethane biodegradation pathway in E.coli

Vicky Kobylski

Honours student – Methanotrophic bacteria in Jenolan Caves

Ceri Jennings

Honours student – Expression of penicillin synthase enzyme in E.coli

Sam Ross

Honours student – Expression of dehalogenases in E.coli

Abigail Sison

Honours student – Development of synthetic gene cassettes for detecting integron activity

Kiri Martin

Honours student – Expression of SmoXYB1C1Z monooxygenase in Mycobacterium smegmatis

Jazmin Oszvar

Honours student – Expression of SmoXYB1C1Z monooxygenase in Mycobacterium smegmatis

Emily Zhao

Honours student -Biodegradation of DDT and its metabolites

Vicky McCarl

Postdoc – Heterologous expression of monooxygenase components in E.coli

Carl Tong

Honours student – Mutagenesis of copper monooxygenase genes of Mycobacterium NBB4

Simon Dingsdag

Honours student – Bacterial communities associated with apical periodontitis

Becca Henry

Honours student – Characterisation of EtnD reductase from Mycobacterium NBB4

Laura Nolan

Honours student – Growth kinetics of Mycobacterium NBB4

Sheree Yau

Honours student – Proteomics of Mycobacterium NBB4

Morgaine Peart

Honours student – Investigation of plant-associated mycobacteria

Matt Quek

Honours student – Characterising monooxygenase genes in Mycobacterium NBB4

Carmen Li

Honours student – Linking genotype and phenotype in Mycobacterium NBB4

Fiona Tang

Postdoc – Biodegradation of herbicides

Helen Douglas

Hons student -Biodegradation of chloromethylphenol

Josephine Conrade

Research assistant – Biodegradation of herbicides

iGEM teams

The International Genetically Engineered Machine Competition

iGEM is a global competition in synthetic biology, where students compete to create the most useful or novel GMO microbe. All the information that they generate and all the new DNA elements that they construct are made publicly available; this is an excellent example of open source science.  The Coleman lab has hosted iGEM teams at the University of Sydney since 2013; click the photo to view each team’s project website. Their DNA parts can be found in the Parts Registry here.

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iGEM 2019

USyd iGEM team 2019 “MagiColi”. From left: Emma Todd, Isobel Magrath, Nathan Hawkins, (Nick.C), Fahad Ali, Merrie Caruana, Benj Gonzaga

iGEM 2017

USyd iGEM team 2017 “DISCO”. From left: Ruby Dawes, Erica Stewart, Grace Attrill, Courtney Pratt, Jamie Littleboy, Stephanie Sun, Alex Kelly, Emaleen Najjar

iGEM 2016

USyd iGEM team 2016 “FRES(H)”. From left: Liam Ferguson, (Nick Coleman), Claudia Moratti, Amanda Chen, Wunna Kyaw, Alma Wu, Sholto Douglas, Sing-Young Chen, Orion Tong

iGEM 2015

USyd iGEM team 2015 “Myco Mimic”. From left: Lizzie Richardson, Mark Somerville, Mahiar Mahjoub, Gaia Hermann, Harrison Steel, Sandi Bo

iGEM 2014

USyd iGEM team 2014 “Easy cloni”. From left: Andy Bachler, Jeanne Zhang, Abigail Sison, Rokiah Alford, Callum Grey, Tom Connor

iGEM 2013

USyd iGEM team 2013 “DCA Down Under”. From left: Cyril Tang, Vivian Li, (Nick Coleman), Robbie Oppenheimer, Andrew Tuckwell, James Bergfield, Shuravi Paul. (not shown): Desmond Li, Hugh Ford



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Peter Rutledge

Organic chemistry

Federico Maggi

Federico Maggi Environmental engineering

John Kavanagh

Chemical engineering

Brian Jones

Plant molecular biology

Michael Kertesz

Soil microbiology

Jacqui Matthews

Structural biology

Marjorie Valix

Chemical engineering

Andy Holmes

Microbial ecology

Mike Manefield

Environmental microbiology

Tom Jeffries

Microbial bioinformatics

Colin Murrell

Environmental microbiology

Claudia Vickers

Synthetic biology

Liz Gillam

Microbial biotechnology

Jim Gossett

Environmental engineering

Jim Spain

Environmental microbiology

Tim Mattes

Environmental engineering

Michael Gillings

Molecular microbiology

Chris Marquis

Chris Marquis Microbial biotechnology

Rob Willows

Plant biotechnology

Ian Paulsen

Microbial genomics

Sasha Tetu

Microbial genomics

Colin Scott

Synthetic biology

Gunjan Pandey

Environmental biotechnology



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