Dr Linda Armbrecht

University of Adelaide
Research Field: Marine Ecosystems

With ongoing climate change, research into Earth’s resilience is a matter of urgency, particularly in rapidly melting polar regions. Key to understanding how climate change might affect marine life are records of the past. We can look at marine sedimentary records to find out who existed before our time, for how long and how well they were adapted to the surrounding ocean conditions. 

Dr Linda Armbrecht has optimised sedimentary ancient DNA techniques so that we can now investigate important past marine species (particularly plankton) from only a few grams of seafloor sediments. She is now applying these techniques to reconstruct marine ecosystems around Antarctica for the last few thousand years.  

Linda’s research has been featured in a short film “Drilling for DNA” produced by Lee Stevens from the American Museum of Natural History. She has her own website called “Paleoplanktonics” and has written several blog posts on her work in Antarctica, including a series called “postcards from Antarctica”.

Linda was awarded her PhD in 2015 at Macquarie University. She is currently a Research Fellow/ARC DECRA Fellow at the Australian Centre for Ancient DNA, the University of Adelaide