Climate change threatens the health and resilience of coral reef ecosystems on a global scale. As socioeconomic dependence on coral reefs is very high in many oceanic countries, protecting these systems requires an understanding of their capability to withstand environmental stress. Scleractinian corals provide the foundation for the existence of shallow tropical coral reefs. They live in a nutritional symbiosis with unicellular photosynthetic algae, which allows them to thrive in mostly nutrient-poor tropical waters.
The dissociation of this partnership in response to environmental stress (coral bleaching) is one of the primary causes for the decline of coral reefs. While the algal symbiont provides the coral host with organic compounds, little is known about the specific effects of stress on the nutrient exchange between both partners.
Increasing water temperatures compromise the photosynthetic performance of the algal symbiont, potentially leading to coral bleaching. However studies have shown that prey capture of the host (coral heterotrophy) has the potential to mitigate these effects. My work uses stable isotope labeling with transmission electron microscopy and NanoSIMS elemental and isotopic mapping to track nutrient fluxes in both partners. This represents a high-resolution experimental approach, which, in combination with the measurement of bleaching proxies, metabolic turnover and molecular stress markers, provides a coherent picture about the impact that environmental stress has on the nutritional relationship.
How stress affects each partner and to what extent coral heterotrophy can act as a strategy to increase bleaching resistance in corals are important questions. An understanding of these physiological processes is fundamental for assessing the long-term resilience of corals to climate change-induced environmental stress.
Coral and Symbiodinium ecophysiology
Carbon and nitrogen metabolism of corals
Correlative TEM and NanoSIMS
|Postdoctoral Researcher||Laboratory for Biological Geochemistry||EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland||2014-2018|
|Scientific Assistant||Laboratory for Biological Geochemistry||EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland||2014|
|Teaching assistant||School of Biological Sciences||Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand||2012|
|Diplom thesis work||Gates Lab||Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology, USA||2009|
|Student research assistant||Marine Botany Department||University of Bremen, Germany||2008|
|PhD||Coral Reef Biology||Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand||2010-2013|
|Diplom||Marine Biology||University of Bremen, Germany||2004-2009|
|Study Abroad Semester||James Cook University, Australia||2007|
|Gibbin E., Gavish A., Krueger T., Kramarsky-Winter E., Shapiro O., Guiet R., Jensen L., Vardi A., Meibom A.
(2018) The ISME Journal
|Vibrio coralliilyticus infection triggers a behavioural response and perturbs nutritional exchange and tissue integrity in a symbiotic coral|
|Bellworthy J., Menoud M., Krueger T., Meibom A., Fine M.
(2018) Journal of Experimental Biology, doi: 10.1242/jeb.186940
|Developmental carry over effects of ocean warming and acidification in corals from a potential climate refugium, Gulf of Aqaba|
|Krueger T., Bodin J., Horwitz N., Loussert-Fonta C., Escrig S., Fine M., Meibom A.
(2018) Scientific Reports, 8, Article number: 12710
|Temperature and feeding induce tissue level changes in autotrophic and heterotrophic nutrient allocation in the coral symbiosis â A NanoSIMS study|
|Gibbin E.M., Krueger T., Putnam H.M., Barott K.L., Bodin J., Gates R.D., Meibom A.
(2018) Frontiers in Marine Science, doi: 10.3389/fmars.2018.00010
|Short-term thermal acclimation modifies the metabolic condition of the coral holobiont|
|Cohen, S., Krueger, T., Fine, M.
(2017) PeerJ, 5:e3749
|Measuring coral calcification under ocean acidification: methodological considerations for the 45Ca-uptake and total alkalinity anomaly technique|
|Krueger T., Horwitz N., Bodin J., Giovani M.-E., Escrig S., Meibom A., Fine M.
(2017) Royal Society Open Science, 4:170038
|Common reef-building coral in the Northern Red Sea resistant to elevated temperature and acidification|
|Pontasch S., Fisher P.L, Krueger T., Dove S., Hoegh-Guldberg O., Leggat W., Davy S.K.
(2017) Journal of Phycology, 53(2), 308-321
|Photoacclimatory and photoprotective responses to cold versus heat stress in high latitude reef corals|
(2017) Symbiosis, 71(3), 167-174
|Concerning the cohabitation of animals and algae â an English translation of K. Brandtâs 1881 presentation âUeber das Zusammenleben von Thieren und Algenâ|
|Hawkins T.D., Krueger T., Wilkinson S.P., Fisher P.L., Davy S.K.
(2015) Coral Reefs, 34(4), 1229-1241
|Antioxidant responses to heat- and light-stress differ with habitat in a common reef-coral|
|Krueger T., Hawkins T.D., Becker S., Pontasch S., Dove S., Hoegh-Guldberg O., Leggat W., Fisher P.L., Davy S.K
(2015) Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology - Part A: Molecular & Integrative Physiology, 190, 15-25
|Differential coral bleaching - Contrasting the activity and response of enzymatic antioxidants in symbiotic partners under thermal stress|
|Krueger T., Fisher P.L., Becker S., Pontasch S., Dove S., Hoegh-Guldberg O., Leggat W., Davy S.K.
(2015) BMC Evolutionary Biology, 15:48 [Highly accessed]
|Transcriptomic characterization of the enzymatic antioxidants FeSOD, MnSOD, APX and KatG in the dinoflagellate genus Symbiodinium|
|Krueger T., Becker S., Pontasch S., Dove S., Hoegh-Guldberg O., Leggat W., Fisher P.L., Davy S.K.
(2014) Journal of Phycology, 50(6), 1035-1047
|Antioxidant plasticity and thermal sensitivity in four types of Symbiodinium sp.|
|Hawkins T.D., Krueger T., Becker S., Fisher P.L., Davy S.K.
(2014) Coral Reefs, 33(1), 141-153
|Differential nitric oxide synthesis and host apoptotic events correlate with bleaching susceptibility in reef corals|
|Krueger T., Gates R.D.
(2012) Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 413(10), 169-176
|Cultivating endosymbionts - Host environmental mimics support the survival of Symbiodinium C15 ex hospite|