Associate Professor Sophie Leterme

20052020

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Personal profile

Research Biography

I joined Flinders University in 2006 as a post-doctoral researcher to work on the ecology of the Coorong wetlands, focusing on the impact of environmental change on microbial and plankton communities. I took on a Lecturer position at Flinders University in 2008 and furthered my research on the adaptation of plankton to salinity fluctuations that was funded by the ARC through a Discovery Project.

I was the deputy node leader of SA-IMOS (South Australian Node of IMOS (Integrated Marine Observing System)) for 2009-2015, leading the biological program of SA-IMOS. I was promoted to Senior Lecturer (2013) and developped my research on the impact of microbial communities in the biofouling of desalination plants which was funded by the National Centre of Excellence in Desalination - Australia (NCEDA).

I became an Associate Professor at Flinders University in 2016.

My research focuses on aquatic microbes through 2 principal research streams: (1) Effects of environmental change (i.e. drought, acidification, eutrophication) on plankton biology and ecology, with a special focus on diatoms and copepods and (2) Studies of biofilm formation in aquatic systems, including water treatment and desalination plants.

Research Interests

My current research focuses on:

- Biofouling issues within desalination systems and on marine industrial structures, focusing on bacteria, picoplankton and phytoplankton. This works includes experimental work on the development of biofilms on various surfaces and the use of molecular techniques to identify biofouling communities.

- The dynamic of plankton communities in various ecosystems such as coastal waters, continental shelf, upwelling zones and estuaries (Coorong). This work includes different aspects of the effect of environmental changes on plankton biology and ecology, such as the investigation of silicification of diatoms under different growth conditions or the impact of microplastics on the microbial and planktonic food web.

Education/Academic qualification

Graduate Certificate, Flinders University

Award Date: 23 Feb 2017

PhD, University of Plymouth

15 Sep 20035 Sep 2006

Award Date: 1 Sep 2006

Master, Universite Pierre et Marie Curie

15 Sep 20025 Jul 2003

Award Date: 29 Jul 2003

Bachelor, Universite des Sciences et Technologies de Lille

15 Sep 19965 Jul 2000

Award Date: 29 Jul 2000

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