Understanding the koala microbiome: unlocking the secrets of koala health and dietary specialisation, and successful husbandry and translocation (ARC Linkage Project administered by UWS) (2015–2018)

Abstract:
We aim to discover how the composition and function of koala gastrointestinal microbial communities differ in space and time in response to the varying nutritional quality and chemical composition of koala diets. Using detailed chemical analysis, cutting edge metagenomic and bioinformatic pipelines and powerful approaches to study enzyme functions in the koala¿s gut we will reveal the role of microbes in detoxification of plant toxins and degradation of recalcitrant fibre fractions. The outcomes will facilitate the use of faecal transplants to improve digestive function for translocated and rehabilitated koalas, enhancing options for koala management and conservation.
Grant type:
University of Western Sydney
Researchers:
  • UQ Laureate Fellow
    School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences
    Faculty of Science
    Affiliate Professor
    The University of Queensland Diamantina Institute
    Faculty of Medicine
Funded by:
University of Western Sydney