My current research focuses on

  • Connectivity and population structure, emphasising conservation and fisheries management applications,
  • Acclimation and adaptation of tropical fishes to environmental stressors, and
  • Reef fish evolutionary history and response to environmental change, including identification, characterization and expression of candidate genes.
  • Transgenerational acclimation to stress and the utility of epigenetic mechanisms, applied to coral reef fishes.
  • BS1001: Introduction to Biological Processes (Level 1; TSV)
  • BS2470: Evolution (Level 2; TSV)
  • BS5470: Evolution (Level 5; TSV)
  • BZ3450: Ecological and Conservation Genetics (Level 3; TSV)
  • BZ5450: Ecological and Conservation Genetics (Level 5; TSV)
  • MB5450: Molecular Approaches to Marine Ecology and Evolution (Level 5; TSV)

These are the most recent publications associated with this author. To see a detailed profile of all publications stored at JCU, visit ResearchOnline@JCU. Hover over Altmetrics badges to see social impact.

Journal Articles
Book Chapters

ResearchOnline@JCU stores 101+ research outputs authored by Dr Lynne van Herwerden from 1989 onwards.

Current Funding

Current and recent Research Funding to JCU is shown by funding source and project.

Lizard Island Research Station - Rossi Foundation Grant

Assessing the ecological risks of plastic pollution to coral reef environments

Indicative Funding
$13,500 over 2 years
The proposed research is part of my PhD, which aims to address ecological risks of microplastic contamination on coral reef ecosystems. Through field and laboratory surveys at Lizard Island, this study will improve our knowledge of: microplastic abundance in coral reef habitats; microplastic uptake by coral reef organisms (coral, sponge, ascidian, fish and sea cucumber); and uptake dynamics. Specifically, we will characterize microplastic abundance and distribution at the environment (air-surface interface, in the water column and in the sediment) and in organisms, and investigate microplastics selection, retention and depuration by selected coral reef organisms chosen based on the field surveys.
Marina Santana, Lynne van Herwerden, Frederieke Kroon and Cherie Motti (College of Science & Engineering and Australian Institute of Marine Science)
Marine pollution; Microplastics; Biological effects; Ecological impacts; Coral reef environments

AIMS@JCU - Scholarship

Connectivity Within Fisheries Species Along The Great Barrier Reef: Genomics and Modelling

Indicative Funding
This project will investigate connectivity from economically and ecologically important coral reef fish, Lutjanuscarponotatus (Stripey snapper), along the Great Barrier Reef. A combination of genetic and genomic analyses along with hydrodynamic and biogeochemical simulations of larval dispersal will be used to estimate patterns of connectivity among populations. For the first time, connectivity at both Great Barrier Reef wide and regional spatial scales at a 4 km resolution will be quantified. Results will inform policies for reef managers and fisheries agencies to ensure that management practices achieve their objectives.
Rodrigo Gurdek, Lynne van Herwerden, Jessica Benthuysen and Mark Baird in collaboration with Hugo Harrison (College of Science & Engineering, Australian Institute of Marine Science, Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation and ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies)
Great Barrier Reef; Lutjanuscarponotatus (Lutjanidae); Hydrodynamic Modelling; Biogeochemical Modelling; Genetics/Genomics; Population Connectivity

Sea World Research and Rescue Foundation Inc - Research Grant

An investigation of multiple paternity in the endangered narrow sawfish, Anoxypristis cuspidata

Indicative Funding
This genetics-based project will investigate multiple paternity in the endangered narrow sawfish for the first time. Sawfishes are arguably the most vulnerable of all marine fishes. Despite this, most aspects of their ecology and reproductive behaviour are poorly understood. A bycatch event of 25 pregnant females in Princess Charlotte Bay has provided a rare opportunity to explore multiple paternity in this species across a large number of litters. Using neutral molecular markers (microsatellites), this study will fill an important knowledge gap and provide information critical to effective conservation and management of this endangered species.
Jan Strugnell, Claire Gauci and Lynne van Herwerden (College of Science & Engineering)
Anoxypristis cuspidata (Pristidae); narrow sawfish; endangered; multiple paternity; microsatellites; conservation genetics

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority - Science for Management Award

Temporal variability of self-recruitment and gene flow of Lutjanus carponotatus among no-take marine reserves in the southern Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

Indicative Funding
Self-recruitment and inter-No-take marine reserves gene flow will be quantified from the ecologically important coral reef fish Lutjanus carponotatus, collected from the Keppel Islands (southern Great Barrier Reef Marine Park) during 2008/09. This will be done by using genomic tools (both neutral and outlier single nucleotide polymorphisms). These results will be compared to additional SNP data for this species collected from the Keppels during 2012 to gauge temporal variability in self-recruitment/gene flow. Finally, self-recruitment/migration results from genomics will be compared to effective larvae dispersal estimates based on three-dimensional bio-physical model outputs.
Rodrigo Gurdek, Lynne van Herwerden, Hugo Harrison, Jessica Benthuysen and Mark Baird (College of Science & Engineering, ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, Australian Institute of Marine Science and Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation)
Lutjanus carponotatus; Great Barrier Reef; Genomics; Self-replenishment; Gene Flow; Bio-physical modelling

Advisory Accreditation: I can be on your Advisory Panel as a Primary or Secondary Advisor.

These Higher Degree Research projects are either current or by students who have completed their studies within the past 5 years at JCU. Linked titles show theses available within ResearchOnline@JCU.

  • Connectivity within fisheries species along the Great Barrier Reef: genomics and modelling (PhD , Primary Advisor)
  • Biogeography, Speciation, and Systematics of a Tree Frog Species Complex in the Amazon Basin (PhD , Secondary Advisor)
  • Ectoine Gene Cassette Transformation into Cyanobacteria/Microalgae for the Improvement of Salinity and Temperature Resilience. (Masters , Secondary Advisor)
  • Hybridising Butterflyfishes in Space and Time: Likely Causes Consequences and Implications. (PhD , Primary Advisor)
  • Conservation Genomics and Ecology of True Sea Snakes (PhD , Primary Advisor)
  • Impacts of Microplastics on Tropical Marine Organisms and Ecosystems (PhD , Primary Advisor)

These are the most recent metadata records associated with this researcher. To see a detailed description of all dataset records, visit the JCU Research Data Catalogue.


The map shows research collaborations by institution from the past 7 years.
Note: Map points are indicative of the countries or states that institutions are associated with.

  • 5+ collaborations
  • 4 collaborations
  • 3 collaborations
  • 2 collaborations
  • 1 collaboration
  • Indicates the Tropics (Torrid Zone)

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