Meet the people

Meet the People

Principal Investigators

 
Monica Gerth  Monica has a BSc in Chemistry from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington and a PhD in Biomolecular Chemistry from Emory University. In 2008 she moved to New Zealand with a FRST Postdoctoral Fellowship to work with Prof Paul Rainey at the Massey University’s Albany Campus. After this brief foray into genetics, she moved down south (to the University of Otago) to start her academic career as a PI. In 2018, Monica was appointed as a Senior Lecturer in Microbiology at Victoria University of Wellington. She grew up in an army family, so was basically raised as a nomad. However, she has completely fallen in love with Wellington, and claims she will never move again.  Monica’s research interests include microbial chemotaxis (how microbes navigate their environment), microbe-plant interactions, and the biodiscovery of new antimicrobials. A major current focus of her group is kauri dieback disease and the integration of Mātauranga Māori into research.

Monica Gerth

Monica has a BSc in Chemistry from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington and a PhD in Biomolecular Chemistry from Emory University. In 2008 she moved to New Zealand with a FRST Postdoctoral Fellowship to work with Prof Paul Rainey at the Massey University’s Albany Campus. After this brief foray into genetics, she moved down south (to the University of Otago) to start her academic career as a PI. In 2018, Monica was appointed as a Senior Lecturer in Microbiology at Victoria University of Wellington. She grew up in an army family, so was basically raised as a nomad. However, she has completely fallen in love with Wellington, and claims she will never move again.

Monica’s research interests include microbial chemotaxis (how microbes navigate their environment), microbe-plant interactions, and the biodiscovery of new antimicrobials. A major current focus of her group is kauri dieback disease and the integration of Mātauranga Māori into research.

Wayne Patrick  Wayne’s BSc (Hons) degree is from the University of Otago and his PhD is from the University of Cambridge. He spent 4 years as a post-doc at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, which was enough time to become a (long-suffering) fan of the Falcons. He moved home to New Zealand in 2007 and began his academic career as Lecturer and then Senior Lecturer at Massey University's Albany campus. From 2012 to 2018 he held his Rutherford Discovery Fellowship at Otago. In 2018, Wayne returned to the city of his birth as an Associate Professor of Biochemistry at Victoria University. The hills are steeper than his 3 year-old self remembers, but he enjoys trying to run up them nonetheless.  Wayne’s research mostly focuses on the evolution and engineering of enzymes. He is convinced that new tools from ‘omics and synthetic biology make this the best time in history to be an enzymologist. He also has a long-standing interest in the evolution antimicrobial resistance, in pathogens of both humans and kauri.

Wayne Patrick

Wayne’s BSc (Hons) degree is from the University of Otago and his PhD is from the University of Cambridge. He spent 4 years as a post-doc at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, which was enough time to become a (long-suffering) fan of the Falcons. He moved home to New Zealand in 2007 and began his academic career as Lecturer and then Senior Lecturer at Massey University's Albany campus. From 2012 to 2018 he held his Rutherford Discovery Fellowship at Otago. In 2018, Wayne returned to the city of his birth as an Associate Professor of Biochemistry at Victoria University. The hills are steeper than his 3 year-old self remembers, but he enjoys trying to run up them nonetheless.

Wayne’s research mostly focuses on the evolution and engineering of enzymes. He is convinced that new tools from ‘omics and synthetic biology make this the best time in history to be an enzymologist. He also has a long-standing interest in the evolution antimicrobial resistance, in pathogens of both humans and kauri.

 

Postdoctoral Fellows

Randy Lacey  Supervisor: Monica  Originally from the United States, Randy earned a BSc from Austin Peay State University and a PhD from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville (Go Vols). As a graduate student, he explored the signaling capacity of the plant hormone ethylene in non-plant organisms. Recently, as an Intelligence Community Postdoc Fellow at Sandia National Labs in New Mexico, he studied and sought to develop protein-based, whole cell biosensors for the detection of metals in the environment.  Now as a postdoc with Monica, Randy is examining how the soil pathogens Phytophthora agathidicida and Phytophthora cinnamomi sense and navigate their environment with hopes of ultimately developing tools to reduce their spread. In his spare time, he spends it in the outdoors tramping, camping, skiing, and trying to see as much of New Zealand as possible.

Randy Lacey

Supervisor: Monica

Originally from the United States, Randy earned a BSc from Austin Peay State University and a PhD from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville (Go Vols). As a graduate student, he explored the signaling capacity of the plant hormone ethylene in non-plant organisms. Recently, as an Intelligence Community Postdoc Fellow at Sandia National Labs in New Mexico, he studied and sought to develop protein-based, whole cell biosensors for the detection of metals in the environment.

Now as a postdoc with Monica, Randy is examining how the soil pathogens Phytophthora agathidicida and Phytophthora cinnamomi sense and navigate their environment with hopes of ultimately developing tools to reduce their spread. In his spare time, he spends it in the outdoors tramping, camping, skiing, and trying to see as much of New Zealand as possible.

Chelsea Vickers  Supervisor: Wayne  Chelsea received her BSc, MSc and PhD from the University of Waikato. Her MSc research (Thermophile Research Unit) focused on microbial extremophiles inhabiting Mt Erebus, Antarctica. Her Doctoral research (Arcus Lab) involved investigating nitrogen and virulence associated metabolism in both pathogenic and environmentally hazardous bacteria. She went on to do her first Post Doctoral Fellowships at the University of Victoria (Canada). There she further investigated the infinite world of carbohydrate active enzymes (CAZymes) and their roles in geochemical carbon cycling and human disease. She became pretty interested in microbial degradation of seaweed. She went on to do a lectureship at Thompson Rivers University (Canada). She has now returned to NZ and joined the MME group where she is working towards filling some fundamental gaps of knowledge between enzyme evolution and fitness landscapes.  In her free time she loves to spend time with families and friends, get outdoors, travel and find new places and spaces to explore in our beautiful country.

Chelsea Vickers

Supervisor: Wayne

Chelsea received her BSc, MSc and PhD from the University of Waikato. Her MSc research (Thermophile Research Unit) focused on microbial extremophiles inhabiting Mt Erebus, Antarctica. Her Doctoral research (Arcus Lab) involved investigating nitrogen and virulence associated metabolism in both pathogenic and environmentally hazardous bacteria. She went on to do her first Post Doctoral Fellowships at the University of Victoria (Canada). There she further investigated the infinite world of carbohydrate active enzymes (CAZymes) and their roles in geochemical carbon cycling and human disease. She became pretty interested in microbial degradation of seaweed. She went on to do a lectureship at Thompson Rivers University (Canada). She has now returned to NZ and joined the MME group where she is working towards filling some fundamental gaps of knowledge between enzyme evolution and fitness landscapes.

In her free time she loves to spend time with families and friends, get outdoors, travel and find new places and spaces to explore in our beautiful country.

Tifany Oulavallickal  Supervisor: Wayne  Tifany was born and raised in Switzerland for 10 years, before moving to India. After school, intrigued by the world of science, she did her BTech in Biotechnology. She then moved to New Zealand to do her Masters in Engineering, in Materials and Processing at the University of Waikato. Next, she stayed on to do a PhD in Biochemistry. Her PhD project focussed on studying the evolution of AroA and MurA enzymes from Bacillus using the ancestral sequence reconstruction technique. She is currently a postdoc with Wayne, trying to engineer an RNA ligase system for unbiased sequencing of diverse microRNA pools.  In her free time, Tifany enjoys playing squash, hanging out with friends, going to music gigs, playing board/video games, binge watching TV series, rock climbing and boxing!!!!!

Tifany Oulavallickal

Supervisor: Wayne

Tifany was born and raised in Switzerland for 10 years, before moving to India. After school, intrigued by the world of science, she did her BTech in Biotechnology. She then moved to New Zealand to do her Masters in Engineering, in Materials and Processing at the University of Waikato. Next, she stayed on to do a PhD in Biochemistry. Her PhD project focussed on studying the evolution of AroA and MurA enzymes from Bacillus using the ancestral sequence reconstruction technique. She is currently a postdoc with Wayne, trying to engineer an RNA ligase system for unbiased sequencing of diverse microRNA pools.

In her free time, Tifany enjoys playing squash, hanging out with friends, going to music gigs, playing board/video games, binge watching TV series, rock climbing and boxing!!!!!


PhD Students

Chris Matthews  Supervisor: Wayne  After completing his BSc (Hons) and Masters in the UK, Chris moved to Wellington to start his PhD with Wayne. He has a keen interest in manipulating enzymes to alter or improve their function, and accordingly, his biotechnology-focused project is centered around creating enzyme-based biosensors to aid the wine making process.  As a long time runner, Chris’s spare time is mostly spent tackling the steep streets of Wellington. He’s also an enthusiastic badminton player and enjoys going for lengthy road-trips in the summer.

Chris Matthews

Supervisor: Wayne

After completing his BSc (Hons) and Masters in the UK, Chris moved to Wellington to start his PhD with Wayne. He has a keen interest in manipulating enzymes to alter or improve their function, and accordingly, his biotechnology-focused project is centered around creating enzyme-based biosensors to aid the wine making process.

As a long time runner, Chris’s spare time is mostly spent tackling the steep streets of Wellington. He’s also an enthusiastic badminton player and enjoys going for lengthy road-trips in the summer.

Maximilian Ehrhardt  Supervisor: Monica  Born and raised in Germany, Maximilian dedicated his time to research on cytochromes P450 and their use in biotechnology. After he and two of his fellow students founded an iGEM team at the University of Saarland, his interest in synthetic biology awakened. Therefore he searched for a PhD position in a prospering synthethic biology group and found the MME lab right at the beautiful coast line of New Zealand. In his project with Monica he has been studying how to engineer chemoreceptors with new ligand binding capabilities.  In his spare time he loves to spend time with his friends (and girlfriend), to cook, to play (video/board/sport) games and to admire the scenery.

Maximilian Ehrhardt

Supervisor: Monica

Born and raised in Germany, Maximilian dedicated his time to research on cytochromes P450 and their use in biotechnology. After he and two of his fellow students founded an iGEM team at the University of Saarland, his interest in synthetic biology awakened. Therefore he searched for a PhD position in a prospering synthethic biology group and found the MME lab right at the beautiful coast line of New Zealand. In his project with Monica he has been studying how to engineer chemoreceptors with new ligand binding capabilities.

In his spare time he loves to spend time with his friends (and girlfriend), to cook, to play (video/board/sport) games and to admire the scenery.

Lucy Huang  Supervisor: Monica  Lucy grew up in Dunedin where she graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Microbiology from the University of Otago. She then moved to Wellington to start a PhD with Monica, investigating bacterial chemotaxis in the plant pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv. actinidiae (causative agent of kiwifruit canker).  Combining her passion for art and research, Lucy wants to become a scientific illustrator and hopes to improve science communication.  Outside of the lab, Lucy likes to play pool, go rock climbing, and be around dogs.

Lucy Huang

Supervisor: Monica

Lucy grew up in Dunedin where she graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Microbiology from the University of Otago. She then moved to Wellington to start a PhD with Monica, investigating bacterial chemotaxis in the plant pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv. actinidiae (causative agent of kiwifruit canker).

Combining her passion for art and research, Lucy wants to become a scientific illustrator and hopes to improve science communication.

Outside of the lab, Lucy likes to play pool, go rock climbing, and be around dogs.

Mike Fairhurst  Supervisor: Monica  Mike grew up in rural New Zealand before moving to the beautiful South Island. He studied at the University of Otago, completing a BSc followed by an MSc focused on protein-protein interactions. Mike is a lab veteran, having started with the group in Dunedin as a Research Assistant with Monica in 2016.  When the lab relocated to Victoria University of Wellington, he decided to make the move back north. In 2019, he gave up the luxurious life of a Research Assistant in order to start his PhD working on understanding Phytophthora GPCRs and their role in host sensing.  Outside of work, he likes to get outdoors, go hiking, and taste craft beer.

Mike Fairhurst

Supervisor: Monica

Mike grew up in rural New Zealand before moving to the beautiful South Island. He studied at the University of Otago, completing a BSc followed by an MSc focused on protein-protein interactions. Mike is a lab veteran, having started with the group in Dunedin as a Research Assistant with Monica in 2016.

When the lab relocated to Victoria University of Wellington, he decided to make the move back north. In 2019, he gave up the luxurious life of a Research Assistant in order to start his PhD working on understanding Phytophthora GPCRs and their role in host sensing.

Outside of work, he likes to get outdoors, go hiking, and taste craft beer.

 
Elsie Dunkley  Supervisor: Wayne  Elsie grew up in Christchurch and completed her undergrad at Otago University. After a break travelling (a “sabbatical”), Elsie settled in Wellington in 2018. She completed her Master of Drug Design and Discovery in the MME lab. Her research was in microbial collateral sensitivity, and the evolution of resistance. She will soon be back in the laboratory for her PhD, jumping on the enzyme evolution bandwagon. In the weekend you might find her out for yum cha or at a gig, or more likely in bed with a book and wine.

Elsie Dunkley

Supervisor: Wayne

Elsie grew up in Christchurch and completed her undergrad at Otago University. After a break travelling (a “sabbatical”), Elsie settled in Wellington in 2018. She completed her Master of Drug Design and Discovery in the MME lab. Her research was in microbial collateral sensitivity, and the evolution of resistance. She will soon be back in the laboratory for her PhD, jumping on the enzyme evolution bandwagon. In the weekend you might find her out for yum cha or at a gig, or more likely in bed with a book and wine.

Lee Ann Tejada  Supervisor: Wayne  Lee did her BSc (Hons) degree at the University of Santo Tomas (UST), Philippines where she studied the antioxidant activity of a certain plant extract on oxidized human serum in vitro. She was one of the first international “summer” interns at E-cubed lab under Wayne at the University of Otago.  Lee worked as an instructor at the UST before she decided to come back to New Zealand and begin her PhD. Now, she is on a hunt for the best-fit enzyme to manipulate for her project to build enzyme-based biosensor for wine.  Lee loves to spend her free time playing football and basketball. When you don’t see her playing sports, she is probably wondering around the woods and harbour of Wellington.

Lee Ann Tejada

Supervisor: Wayne

Lee did her BSc (Hons) degree at the University of Santo Tomas (UST), Philippines where she studied the antioxidant activity of a certain plant extract on oxidized human serum in vitro. She was one of the first international “summer” interns at E-cubed lab under Wayne at the University of Otago.

Lee worked as an instructor at the UST before she decided to come back to New Zealand and begin her PhD. Now, she is on a hunt for the best-fit enzyme to manipulate for her project to build enzyme-based biosensor for wine.

Lee loves to spend her free time playing football and basketball. When you don’t see her playing sports, she is probably wondering around the woods and harbour of Wellington.

Marcin Grochowski  Supervisor: Monica  Marcin studied Molecular Biology at the University of Warsaw. After completing his BSc and MSc, he moved to the UK, where he completed his MPhil in Cell and Developmental Biology at the University of Cambridge.  As Marcin is highly interested in proteins and their molecular mechanisms and very enthusiastic about applicable science, he decided to join the MME lab, where he will be studying bacterial chemotaxis.   Marcin is also a huge enthusiast of the history of Ancient Egypt, likes doing creative stuff (for example writing books and short stories).

Marcin Grochowski

Supervisor: Monica

Marcin studied Molecular Biology at the University of Warsaw. After completing his BSc and MSc, he moved to the UK, where he completed his MPhil in Cell and Developmental Biology at the University of Cambridge.

As Marcin is highly interested in proteins and their molecular mechanisms and very enthusiastic about applicable science, he decided to join the MME lab, where he will be studying bacterial chemotaxis.

Marcin is also a huge enthusiast of the history of Ancient Egypt, likes doing creative stuff (for example writing books and short stories).

 

Masters Students

Monica Summers  Supervisors: Monica & Wayne  Monica S. was born and raised in windy Wellington and she studied a BSc at Victoria University of Wellington. She majored in Cell and Molecular Bioscience with a minor in Chemistry. After enjoying her study, she decided to stay on and do a Masters of Science in Cell and Molecular Bioscience.  Monica loves cats, has a small tea addiction and likes swimming, reading and hanging out with friends in her spare time..

Monica Summers

Supervisors: Monica & Wayne

Monica S. was born and raised in windy Wellington and she studied a BSc at Victoria University of Wellington. She majored in Cell and Molecular Bioscience with a minor in Chemistry. After enjoying her study, she decided to stay on and do a Masters of Science in Cell and Molecular Bioscience.

Monica loves cats, has a small tea addiction and likes swimming, reading and hanging out with friends in her spare time..

 
Ryzzah Trinidad  Supervisor: Monica  Ryzzah moved to Wellington in 2007. She graduated from VUW majoring in BIOTEC and CMBIO.  She then took a break travelling out and around NZ, and working until deciding that she's ready for her next adventure- jumping into her masters with Monica.   In her spare time you will find her with friends, driving/exploring, binge watching a TV series or working at a tech shop.

Ryzzah Trinidad

Supervisor: Monica

Ryzzah moved to Wellington in 2007. She graduated from VUW majoring in BIOTEC and CMBIO.

She then took a break travelling out and around NZ, and working until deciding that she's ready for her next adventure- jumping into her masters with Monica.

In her spare time you will find her with friends, driving/exploring, binge watching a TV series or working at a tech shop.

Te Amohaere Ngata-Aerengamate  Supervisor: Monica  Iwi affiliations: Ngāti Porou, Kuki Airani, Te Whānau-ā-Apanui. Qualifications: BSc double major marine and biological sciences. Post graduate diploma in Marine Biology (both from the University of Auckland).  Te Amohaere grew up in Auckland but whakapapa to Te Araroa, East Coast. She moved to Wellington from Auckland to complete a Masters thesis, after being inspired by a science talk given by Dr Monica Gerth on Kauri dieback. In addition to her studies, Te Amohaere also works part-time on the Auckland Council kauri dieback team as a kauri dieback community advisor. Her other interests include art - acrylic painting/drawing, music - composing/singing, sports – rugby union/league.

Te Amohaere Ngata-Aerengamate

Supervisor: Monica

Iwi affiliations: Ngāti Porou, Kuki Airani, Te Whānau-ā-Apanui. Qualifications: BSc double major marine and biological sciences. Post graduate diploma in Marine Biology (both from the University of Auckland).

Te Amohaere grew up in Auckland but whakapapa to Te Araroa, East Coast. She moved to Wellington from Auckland to complete a Masters thesis, after being inspired by a science talk given by Dr Monica Gerth on Kauri dieback. In addition to her studies, Te Amohaere also works part-time on the Auckland Council kauri dieback team as a kauri dieback community advisor. Her other interests include art - acrylic painting/drawing, music - composing/singing, sports – rugby union/league.

Katie Daley  Supervisor: Wayne & Monica  Katie grew up in various parts of Hawkes bay. Spending her childhood in Napier and her teenage years in Waipukurau. Katie moved to wellington to complete a Bachelors of Biomedical Science at Victoria University of Wellington. She has continued into a Masters of Science (Cell and Molecular bioscience) with Wayne.   Katie is part of the Phytophthora team, with a focus on antimicrobial resistance.  Outside of Study, Katie enjoys a cold brew and a yarn with family or friends. She is a self-professed coffee addict, and loves to be creative in the kitchen.

Katie Daley

Supervisor: Wayne & Monica

Katie grew up in various parts of Hawkes bay. Spending her childhood in Napier and her teenage years in Waipukurau. Katie moved to wellington to complete a Bachelors of Biomedical Science at Victoria University of Wellington. She has continued into a Masters of Science (Cell and Molecular bioscience) with Wayne.

Katie is part of the Phytophthora team, with a focus on antimicrobial resistance.

Outside of Study, Katie enjoys a cold brew and a yarn with family or friends. She is a self-professed coffee addict, and loves to be creative in the kitchen.

Hamish Trilin  Supervisor: Wayne  Hamish recently completed his undergraduate studies, graduating later this year with a BSc with majors in Biotechnology and Cell and Molecular Bioscience. He has been part of the MME lab since the beginning of December, when Wayne took him on to work on the hot ligase project as part of a summer research scholarship. Hamish will be continuing work on this project through into his Masters studies over the coming 2 years.

Hamish Trilin

Supervisor: Wayne

Hamish recently completed his undergraduate studies, graduating later this year with a BSc with majors in Biotechnology and Cell and Molecular Bioscience. He has been part of the MME lab since the beginning of December, when Wayne took him on to work on the hot ligase project as part of a summer research scholarship. Hamish will be continuing work on this project through into his Masters studies over the coming 2 years.


Honours Students

Olivia Gale-Flynn  Supervisor: Monica  Olivia received a BSc in Biotechnology and Cell and Molecular Bioscience from VUW in 2018. After completing her summer scholarship with Dr. Monica Gerth she was offered the opportunity to stay on and complete her BSc(Hons) in Biotechnology working on the Pseudomonas syringae pv actinidiae (Psa) chemotaxis research project. When she’s not in the lab Olivia enjoys running, going to the gym, trekking around New Zealand and taste testing Wellington’s selection of craft beers.

Olivia Gale-Flynn

Supervisor: Monica

Olivia received a BSc in Biotechnology and Cell and Molecular Bioscience from VUW in 2018. After completing her summer scholarship with Dr. Monica Gerth she was offered the opportunity to stay on and complete her BSc(Hons) in Biotechnology working on the Pseudomonas syringae pv actinidiae (Psa) chemotaxis research project. When she’s not in the lab Olivia enjoys running, going to the gym, trekking around New Zealand and taste testing Wellington’s selection of craft beers.

Lynette Lander  Supervisor: Wayne  Lynette is back in her hometown after spending over 20 years in Auckland and the Bay of Plenty in a variety of business leadership and ownership roles. She returned to study in 2014 and received a Bachelor of Biomedical Science in Molecular Pathology and Human Genetics in 2018. Her Honours project with Wayne is focused on antibiotic resistance and collateral sensitivity in a pathogen of interest in New Zealand, Klebsiella pneumoniae. She used to race cars but now settles for a scooter for an easy commute and parking. When she is not in the lab you will find her with friends, food, her husband Chris, her two fur-babies and a nice red.

Lynette Lander

Supervisor: Wayne

Lynette is back in her hometown after spending over 20 years in Auckland and the Bay of Plenty in a variety of business leadership and ownership roles. She returned to study in 2014 and received a Bachelor of Biomedical Science in Molecular Pathology and Human Genetics in 2018. Her Honours project with Wayne is focused on antibiotic resistance and collateral sensitivity in a pathogen of interest in New Zealand, Klebsiella pneumoniae. She used to race cars but now settles for a scooter for an easy commute and parking. When she is not in the lab you will find her with friends, food, her husband Chris, her two fur-babies and a nice red.

 
 

Research Assistants

Abi Suscy  Supervisor: Monica  Abi is our Te Kura o Te Kauri coordinator. Before taking on this job (and becoming an expert in shipping container transport) she did a summer research project on Phytophthora with Monica. Continuing the lab tradition of recruiting marine biologists, Abi has a BSc in Marine Biology from VUW.

Abi Suscy

Supervisor: Monica

Abi is our Te Kura o Te Kauri coordinator. Before taking on this job (and becoming an expert in shipping container transport) she did a summer research project on Phytophthora with Monica. Continuing the lab tradition of recruiting marine biologists, Abi has a BSc in Marine Biology from VUW.

Emma Nickelsen  Supervisors: Monica & Wayne  Emma is in New Zealand on a big adventure from Ireland. After spending a couple of months roadtripping around the country, she recently settled in beautiful Wellington. Emma’s background is in field ecology and marine biology, with a BSc(Hons) and MSc and having worked as an ecological consultant in Ireland for a couple of years. Discovering New Zealand’s natural beauty and endemic species has been the biggest thrill.  You are likely to find Emma on the beach (with her head in the rockpools), exploring her new home or soaking up the Wellington café culture.

Emma Nickelsen

Supervisors: Monica & Wayne

Emma is in New Zealand on a big adventure from Ireland. After spending a couple of months roadtripping around the country, she recently settled in beautiful Wellington. Emma’s background is in field ecology and marine biology, with a BSc(Hons) and MSc and having worked as an ecological consultant in Ireland for a couple of years. Discovering New Zealand’s natural beauty and endemic species has been the biggest thrill.

You are likely to find Emma on the beach (with her head in the rockpools), exploring her new home or soaking up the Wellington café culture.

Sarah Andreassend  Supervisor: Monica  Sarah is our chemistry whiz. She did an MSc in Chemistry with Rob Keyzers, and has been working on a collaborative project on kauri dieback with Monica and Rob part-time. In September, just started full-time in the MME lab.

Sarah Andreassend

Supervisor: Monica

Sarah is our chemistry whiz. She did an MSc in Chemistry with Rob Keyzers, and has been working on a collaborative project on kauri dieback with Monica and Rob part-time. In September, just started full-time in the MME lab.


Undergraduate Researchers

Haileigh is a dual Cell and Molecular Bioscience/ Biotechnology major at VUW. She joined the lab after her 2nd year as a summer research assistant (during this time she counted an insanely large number of zoospores!). Despite this, she has come back to do a SCI306 (Directed Individual Study) project with Monica. Haileigh’s project is getting ‘detached leaf assays’ up and running. These assays will be an important part of the screening pipeline for testing the efficacy of potential anti-Phytophthora compounds/treatments.

Haileigh is a dual Cell and Molecular Bioscience/ Biotechnology major at VUW. She joined the lab after her 2nd year as a summer research assistant (during this time she counted an insanely large number of zoospores!). Despite this, she has come back to do a SCI306 (Directed Individual Study) project with Monica. Haileigh’s project is getting ‘detached leaf assays’ up and running. These assays will be an important part of the screening pipeline for testing the efficacy of potential anti-Phytophthora compounds/treatments.