Lecture to reveal the secret life of microbes

20-Jul-2016

Professor Karen Gibb will expose the incredible role of microbes during the second Charles Darwin University Professorial Lecture for 2016

Professor Karen Gibb will expose the incredible role of microbes during the second Charles Darwin University Professorial Lecture for 2016


Often misunderstood and underappreciated, the incredible role of microbes in every aspect of life will be the focus of the second Charles Darwin University Professorial Lecture for 2016 on Tuesday, 26 July.

The head of Environmental Chemistry and Microbiology, Professor Karen Gibb, will share the extreme survival strategies of these microscopic organisms and their role in key processes in the environment.

“Most people associate bacteria with food poisoning, unsanitary conditions and disease, or those unpleasant pink dots on forgotten food at the back of the fridge, but microbes are essential and very useful,” Professor Gibb said.

“I will also draw on our own research to reveal how bacteria are helping us to understand our local environment, with a particular focus on Darwin Harbour.”

At the free public lecture entitled “The Secret Life of Microbes”, Professor Gibb will talk about how microbiologists have emerged from the world of culture plates and microscopes to use the latest DNA technologies.

“We now talk about microbial ecologists who use these new technologies to study microbial ‘landscapes’ and in so doing have discovered the incredible biodiversity and function of bacteria in even the most inhospitable environments,” she said.

“This relatively new field of research is providing exciting insights into how bacteria form ‘cities’ that communicate and respond to changes in the environment – and their role as early warning sentinels of change.”

Professor Gibb is an environmental microbiologist with 28 years of research experience. She leads the Environmental Chemistry and Microbiology Unit, which is a research and commercial unit at CDU.

Along with her team, she investigates the source of contaminants to interpret changes in marine, estuarine and aquatic environments. This research has supported important improvements in the methodologies and policies that underpin the sustainable management of marine, estuarine and aquatic systems across Northern Australia.

The Professorial Lecture entitled “The Secret Life of Microbes” will be held on Tuesday, 26 July from 5:30pm to 7pm in the University Theatre, Orange 3, Casuarina campus. All welcome, but bookings are essential: RSVP to E: cduevents@cdu.edu.au or T: 08 8946 6554.

Contact us

Media and Communications
Casuarina campus
Orange 12.3.20