franFranciscus Scheelings

PhD Candidate 

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Co-supervised by Prof Marcel Klaassen, Deakin University, Australia

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Residing on and within every metazoan species is a diverse array of microorganisms known collectively as the microbiome. The microbiome is comprised of bacteria, viruses, fungi and protozoa and together they are responsible for regulating a range of physiological processes such as immune function, digestive efficiency, and behaviour. Without the microbiome metazoan life would not be possible. Investigations into the microbial ecology of wild animals are in their infancy and are typically descriptive in nature. The aim of my project is to describe the microbiome of sea turtles and investigate how it regulates physiology. It is hoped that the results of this project will aid in global sea turtle conservation.