Linda Armbrecht

Dr Linda Armbrecht

ARC Research Associate

School of Biological Sciences

Faculty of Sciences

Eligible to supervise Masters and PhD (as Co-Supervisor) - email supervisor to discuss availability.

My research revolves around improving our understanding of modern and ancient phytoplankton and their relationships with the environment - now, in the past and in the future. I maintain a broad, interdisciplinary background in marine science, biological oceanography, micropaleontology and marine and paleo-genomics. I am particularly passionate about ship work at high latitudes and exploring marine sediment records to investigate phytoplankton-environment relationships over geological timescales.

Currently, I am working with ancient phytoplankton DNA from sediment cores taken along the coast of Australia. Genetic community data from these samples will be correlated with the timing and distribution of harmful algal blooms, and the spread of invasive microalgal species, along the East Australian coastline.

recently, I have also been part of IODP Exp. 382 'Iceberg Alley and Subantarctic Ice and Ocean Dynamics' on board the RV Joides Resolution between March and May 2019 ( My personal expedition blog can be found here: An overview about my research on marine sedimentary ancient DNA can be found in this short video, produced by Lee Stevens/IODP:

Marine phytoplankton are globally important microorganisms that live in the ocean’s surface. When these tiny organisms die, they sink to the seafloor and over time build up complex layers in the ocean sediments. By extracting ancient DNA from such sediments, past phytoplankton communities can be reconstructed, providing information on past environmental conditions and climate. This novel knowledge about past marine community adaptation to previous regional and global warming periods helps inform predictions of future marine ecosystem resilience guiding management efforts of marine ecosystems during present-day climate change.

Study opportunities on all levels (Internships, Honours, Masters, PhD) are available with regard to the reconstruction of Antarctic phytoplankton communities and their responses to variations in climate. Sediment cores used for this research were collected off East and West Antarctica, and are dated to the Last Glacial Maximum (~20-25 kyr). This research is highly interdisciplinary, spanning across marine science, biological/palae-oceanography, and palaeo-genomics, and a good understanding in at least one of these disciplines is required.   Study activities include, for example, marine field-work (topic-dependent), laboratory tasks, bioinformatics and data analysis.

International students should note that they must meet the English Language Proficiency (ELP) requirements, and must apply for an International Scholarship). These scholarships are highly competitive and based on an excellent academic record.   Please ensure you meet the eligibility criteria for admission (in relation to PhD or MSc study) prior to contacting us.

If you are interested to commence a degree or conduct an internship in this research area please contact, outlining your motivation and relevant research experience, including your CV, and, if applicable, your current transcript. Please also visit the Australian Centre for Ancient DNA (ACAD) website for further information about our research centre.

  • Appointments

    Date Position Institution name
    2018 ARC Research Associate University of Adelaide, Adelaide
    2018 - 2018 Australian Endeavour Postdoctoral Research Fellow Ecole Normale Supérieure (IBENS)
    2015 - 2017 MQMarine Research Centre Administrator Macquarie University, Sydney
    2015 - 2017 Postdoctoral Research Fellow Macquarie University, Sydney
  • Awards and Achievements

    Date Type Title Institution Name Country Amount
    2019 Invitation Participation in IODP Expedition 382 - Iceberg Alley and Subantarctic Ice and Ocean Dynamics Australian and New Zealand International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Consortium (ANZIC) Australia 337000
  • Language Competencies

    Language Competency
    English Can peer review
    French Can read
    German Can peer review
    Italian Can read
    Latin Can read
  • Education

    Date Institution name Country Title
    2010 - 2014 Macquarie University, Sydney Australia PhD
    2010 - 2008 University of Bremen, Bremen Germany MSc
    2005 - 2008 University of Osnabrueck Germany BSc
  • Certifications

    Date Title Institution name Country
    2018 Australia Awards - Endeavour Research Fellowship Australian Government Department of Education and Training
    2017 Antarctica Service Medal of the USA National Science Foundation, Arlington United States
    2016 First Aid & First Aid in Remote Locations Surf Life Saving NSW
    2016 Approved Arrangements for Accredited Persons (Clas Australian Government Department of Agriculture and Water Resources
    2016 Biosecurity Awareness Australian Government Department of Agriculture and Water Resources
    2007 VDTL Bronze European Committee of Professional Diving Instructors
  • Research Interests

Armbrecht, L. H., 2018 Endeavour Postdoctoral Research Fellowship • ‘Diatom Genomics’ • Funded research with Prof. Chris Bowler, Institut de Biologie de l’École Normale Supérieure (IBENS), Paris, France • AUD$24,500
Armbrecht, L. H., 2017 MQMarine Research Centre Funding • Supporting for the first international ‘Assessing the potential of ancient DNA in marine sediments’ workshop • AUD$6,000
Armbrecht, L. H., 2017 PAIS Early Career Researcher Travel Award • Travel support for ‘Past Antarctic Ice Sheet Dynamics conference’, Trieste, Italy • AUD$1,500
Armbrecht, L. H., 2017 MQMarine Research Centre Conference Award • Supporting participation in the Bioplatforms Australia Workshop ‘Introduction to Metagenomics’ • AUD$263
Armand, L.K., Armbrecht, L. H., Ostrowski, M., George, S., 2016 Australian and New Zealand International Ocean Discovery Program Consortium (ANZIC) Special Analytical Funding • ‘Using ancient phytoplankton communities and genes to illuminate future ocean responses’ • AUD$20,000.
Armbrecht, L. H., 2016 MQMarine Research Centre Travel Award • Supporting participation in the 4th Microbial Ecology Course, Centre for Marine Bio-Innovation UNSW • AUD$500
Armbrecht, L. H., 2016 NSF Advanced Training Program in Antarctica for Early Career Scientists: Biological Adaptations to Environmental Change • Fully sponsored 6-weeks course including 16 days ship-time
Armbrecht, L. H., 2015 ATA Young Scientist Award • AUD$500
Armbrecht, L. H., 2015 CMORE the Agouron Institute, NSF & University of Hawaii Training Program • ‘Microbial Oceanography: From Genomes to Biomes’ • Fully sponsored 1-month course including 1 week ship-time
Armand, L.K., Armbrecht, L. H., Iwai, M. and C. Escutia, 2014 Australian and New Zealand International Ocean Discovery Program Consortium (ANZIC) Special Analytical Funding • ‘Antarctic Pliocene Warming’ • AUD$20,000
Armbrecht, L. H., 2013 Macquarie University HDR Student Conference Presentation Award • ‘Testing the agreement of two phytoplankton abundance estimates: Microscopy and CHEMTAX’ • AUD$200
Armbrecht, L. H., 2013 Postgraduate Student Conference Travel Award • AMSA Golden Jubilee Conference • AUD$500
Armbrecht, L. H., 2013 William Macleay Microbiology Research Fund and Joyce Vickery Scientific Research Fund • Linnean Society of NSW • AUD$1,552
Armbrecht, L. H., 2013 & 2011 Student Travel Bursary Award • Australian Biological Resources Study • AUD$1,000 Total
Armbrecht, L. H., 2012 Postgraduate International Conference Travel Fund • Macquarie University • AUD$3,900
Armbrecht, L. H., 2011 Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Fund • Macquarie University • AUD$4,943.
Armbrecht, L. H., 2010 International Macquarie University Research Excellence Scholarship (iMQRES) • Macquarie University • AUD$111,250 Total

  • Other Supervision Activities

    Date Role Research Topic Location Program Supervision Type Student Load Student Name
    2018 - ongoing Principal Supervisor Data exploration of ancient phytoplankton from deep seafloor sediments The University of Adelaide Principles and Practice of Research III Other Part Time Riley Hodgson
  • Position: ARC Research Associate
  • Email:
  • Campus: North Terrace
  • Building: Darling
  • Room: 205e
  • Org Unit: School of Biological Sciences

Connect With Me
External Profiles