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Environmental Microbiology and Biotechnology Lab

Harnessing the power of microbes
Through our research into microbes we aim to develop new technologies that benefit society and the natural environment.

Our research


We are interested in how microbes learn to metabolise xenobiotic chemicals that are new to the environment and how we can harness the capabilities of microbes to enable cleanup of contaminated sites. 


We are researching which industrial chemical reactions can be replaced with biochemical reactions and how can we exploit microbes and enzymes to make useful products.


We are examining the ecological roles of mycobacteria and looking at how can we use them for biotechnology.

Mobile Genetic Elements (MGEs)

We want to know how MGEs work and how they impact bacterial evolution. We are looking at how can we detect and manipulate MGEs to minimise negative effects (eg. antibiotic resistance) and enhance positive effects (eg. pollutant degradation).

Synthetic Biology (SynBio)

We are increasingly taking a SynBio approach to studying various research questions in the lab; this approach is based on themes such as modularity, abstraction, modelling, and standardisation.


Nick Coleman

Associate Professor
  • +61 2 9351 5858
  • Molecular Bioscience Building (G08) 2 Butlin Avenue, The University of Sydney, NSW, 2006