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Dr Carmel McDougall


Carmel McDougall

Advance Queensland Res Fellow
Australian Rivers Institute
+61 (0)7 3735 3543 (Work)
N13 1.19a, Nathan Campus

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I am a molecular biologist with an interest in evolution and development (evo-devo) and functional genomics, particularly of marine invertebrates. My primary research area is in the field of molluscan biomineralisation, with a focus on identifying the genes involved in controlling shell synthesis, understanding how these genes have evolved, and investigating how variation in these genetic factors leads to differences in shell (or pearl) properties. My research also uses comparative and functional genomics and experimental studies to provide practical outcomes for sustainable aquaculture. *PhD, Masters and Honours projects are now available in the following areas:* Molecular aquaculture (Molluscs) Molluscan aquaculture is a low-impact source of animal protein, however the Queensland industry has been experiencing very low levels of production since the 1920s. Here, the industry is based almost entirely on cultivation of the Sydney rock oyster which has been severely affected by disease. This project will seek to reinvigorate the Queensland industry by 1) investigating additional native rock oyster species as alternatives for aquaculture in northern Australia, and 2) using molecular techniques to improve outcomes for grow-out of Sydney rock oysters in Moreton Bay. Molluscan biomineralisation The process of biomineralisation in molluscs generates structures of outstanding natural beauty and with impressive physical properties, however the mechanism by which this is achieved is poorly understood. This project will use comparative transcriptomics and proteomics across a range of molluscan species to investigate the processes by which molluscs build their shells. Comparing the underlying molecular basis for biomineralisation across different species and shell types will reveal the principles underlying the formation of shells of different compositions, and provide insight into the evolution of these remarkable biological materials. I welcome enquiries from potential HDR (PhD and Masters) candidates interested in joining my research group. Please contact me to discuss potential projects. Expressions of interest for Griffith University scholarship rounds close in April and September annually.


  • Member
    Australian Rivers Institute2017


  • Bachelor Of Science With Honours
    The University of Queensland2000 - 2003
  • Doctor of Philosophy
    The University of Oxford2005 - 2009