I obtained my MSc degree 1998 in Biology with emphasis on Biological Oceanography at the Christian-Albrechts University in Kiel and the PhD (2003) at Bremen University (Alfred-Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research), Germany. Before joining the University of East Anglia (UEA) in 2007, most of my PostDoc research was conducted with a fellowship from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) in the School of Oceanography, University of Washington (EV Armbrust lab) in joint cooperation with the Biotechnology Center, University of Wisconsin (MR Sussman lab), USA. Before I was promoted to Professor in 2014, I was Reader (2012-2014) and had a Research Councils UK (RCUK) Academic Fellowship (2007-2012). I am a member of several genome and metagenome projects with marine microalgae (e.g. diatoms) and bacteria and conducted transcriptome analysis with diatoms using microarrays and expressed sequence tags (ESTs) in order to find the molecular basis of adaptation to environmental conditions. A crucial part of this research is the identification of metabolic pathways (e.g carbon fixation, silicon bioprocesses in diatoms) and their key regulatory components (e.g. DNA-binding proteins) to find mechanisms on how these organisms sense changes in environmental conditions. This fundamental knowledge about microbes from the upper ocean will help to interpret future responses to global change.

PhD Studentships Available
DMSP catabolism in polar sea-ice algae: Physiological and global implications

PhD Positions

Click here for other current PhD opportunities in the School of Environmental Sciences. However, feel free to email me to discuss projects outside these areas and alternative sources of funding.



Key Research Interests

Environmental and functional genomics of marine microbial organisms; metagenomics of the upper ocean; physiological adaptation; diatom biology; photosynthesis; polar biology; biochemistry; biological oceanography.

Significant Publications

  • B.A. Read, J. Kegel, M.J. Klute, A. Kuo, S.C. Lefebvre, F. Maumus, C. Mayer, J. Miller, A. Monier, A. Salamov, J. Young, M. Aguilar, J-M. Claverie, S. Frickenhaus, K. Gonzalez, E.K. Herman, Y-C. Lin, J. Napier, H. Ogata, A.F. Sarno, J. Shmutz, D. Schroeder, C. de Vargas, F. Verret, P. von Dassow, K. Valentin, Y. Van de Peer, G. Wheeler,A.E. Allen, K. Bidle, M. Borodovsky, C. Bowler, C. Brownlee, J.M. Cock, M. Elias, V.N. Gladyshev, M. Groth, C. Guda, A. Hadaegh, M.D. Iglesias-Rodriguez, J. Jenkins, B.M. Jones, T. Lawson, F. Leese, E. Lindquist, A. Lobanov, A. Lomsadze, S-B. Malik, M.E. Marsh, L. Mackinder, T. Mock, B. Mueller-Roeber, A. Pagarete, M. Parker, I. Probert, H. Quesneville, C. Raines, S.A. Rensing, D.M. Riaño-Pachón, S. Richier, S. Rokitta, Y. Shiraiwa, D.M. Soanes, M. van der Giezen, T.M. Wahlund, B. Williams, W. Wilson, G. Wolfe, L.L. Wurch, J.B. Dacks, C.F. Delwiche, S.T. Dyhrman, G. Glöckner, U. John, T. Richards, A.Z. Worden, X. Zhang & I.V. Grigoriev (2013) Pan genome of the phytoplankton Emiliania underpins its global distribution. Nature doi: 10.1038/nature12221
  • Curtis, B.A., Tanifuji, G., Burki, F., Gruber, A., Irimia, M., Mayuyama, S., Arias, M.C., Ball, S.G., Gile, G.H., Hirakawa, Y., Hopkins J.F., Kuo, A., Rensing, S.A., Schumtz, J., Symeonidi, A., Elias, M., Eveleigh, R.J.M., Herman, E.K., Klute, M.J., Nakayam, T., Obornik, M., Reyes-Prieto, A., Armbrust, E.V., Aves, S.J., Beiko, R.G., Coutinho, P., Dacks, J.B., Durnford, D.G., Fast, N.M., Green, B.R., Grisdale, C.J., Hempel, F., Henrissat, B., Hoppner, M.P., Ishida, K-I., Kim, E., Loreny, K., Krooth, P.G., Liu, Y., Mali, S-B., Maier, U.G., McRose, D., Mock, T., Neilson, J.A.D., Onodera, N.T., Poole, A.M., Pritham, E.J., Richards, T.A., Rocap, G., Roy, S.W., Sarai, C., Schaack, S., Shirato, S., Slamovits, C.H., Spencer, D.F., Suzuki, S., Worden, A.Z., Zauner, S., Barry, K., Bell, C., Bharti, A.K., Crow, J.A., Grimwood, J., Kramer, R., Lindquist, E., Lucas, S., Salamov, A., McFadden, G.I., Lane, C.E., Keeling, P.J., Gray, M.W., Grigoriev, I.V., Archibald, J.M. (2012) Algal genomes reveal evolutionary mosaicism and the fate of nucleomorphs. Nature 492, 59-65 doi: 10.1038/nature11681
  • Worden AZ, Lee JH$, Mock T$, Rouzé P$, Simmons MP$, Aerts AL, Allen AE, Cuvelier ML, Derelle E, Everett MV, Foulon E, Grimwood J, Gundlach H, Henrissat B, Napoli C, McDonald SM, Parker MS, Rombauts S, Salamov A, Von Dassow P, Badger JH, Coutinho PM, Demir E, Dubchak I, Gentemann C, Eikrem W, Gready JE, John U, Lanier W, Lindquist EA, Lucas S, Mayer KF, Moreau H, Not F, Otillar R, Panaud O, Pangilinan J, Paulsen I, Piegu B, Poliakov A, Robbens S, Schmutz J, Toulza E, Wyss T, Zelensky A, Zhou K, Armbrust EV, Bhattacharya D, Goodenough UW, Van de Peer Y, Grigoriev IV. (2009) Green evolution and dynamic adaptations revealed by genomes of the marine picoeukaryotes Micromonas. Science, 324: 268-72. ($These authors contributed equally to this work)
  • Bowler C, Allen AE, Badger JH, Grimwood J, Jabbari K, Kuo A, Maheswari U, Martens C, Maumus F, Otillar RP, Rayko E, Salamov A, Vandepoele K, Beszteri B, Gruber A, Heijde M, Katinka M, Mock T, Valentin K, Verret F, Berges JA, Brownlee C, Cadoret J-P, Chiovitti A, Choi CJ, Coesel S, De Martino A, Detter JC, Durkin C, Falciatore A, Fournet J, Haruta M, Huysmann M, Jenkins BD, Jiroutova K, Jorgensen RE, Joubert Y, Kaplan A, Kroeger N, Kroth P, La Roche J, Lindquist E, Lommer M, Martin-Jezequel V, Lopez PJ, Lucas S, Mangogna M, McGinnis K, Medlin LK, Montsant A, Oudot-Le Secq M-P, Napoli C, Obornik M, Petit J-L, Porcel BM, Poulsen N, Robison M, Rychlewski L, Rynearson TA, Schmutz J, Schnitzler Parker M, Shapiro H, Siaut M, Stanley M, Sussman MJ, Taylor A, Vardi A, von Dassow P, Vyverman W, Willis A, Wyrwicz LS, Rokhsar DS, Weissenbach J, Armbrust EV, Green BR, Van de Peer Y, Grigoriev IV  (2008) The Phaeodactylum genome reveals the dynamic nature and multi-lineage evolutionary history of diatom genomes. Nature, 456: 239-244. (T. Mock with significant contribution)
  • Mock T, Samanta MP, Iverson V, Berthiaume C, Robison M, Holtermann K, Durkin C, Splinter BonDurant S, Richmond K, Rodesch M, Kallas T, Huttlin EL, Cerrina F, Sussman MR & Armbrust EV (2008) Whole genome expression profiling of the marine diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana identifies genes involved in silicon bioprocesses. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, 105: 1579-1584. (cover story with commentary)

Publications: EPrints Digital Repository

Teaching Interests

Module Organizer:

  • ENV-MA9Y Research Training Project (MSci)

I teach on:

  • ENV-3A15 Biological Oceanography and Marine Ecology
  • ENV-1A29 Global Environmental Challenges
  • ENV-3A20 Global Environmental Change
  • ENV MA15 Marine Ecology and Biological Oceanography

External Activities and Indicators of Esteem

  • Editorships:
  • Associate Editor of Journal of Phycology
  • Associate Editor of Algological Studies
  • Associate Editor of Microalgae Biotechnology
  • Elected member of Research Council Review Boards:
  • NERC college member
  • External supervisory activities:
  • Open University PhD supervisor for Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn, Naples, Italy