Lab Members

Tae Woo Ryu, Research Unit Group Leader
taewoo.ryu2 at oist.jp

Twitter @ravasi_lab

I majored in Genomics and completed my PhD at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST). After fell in love with coral reef and tropical fish, I have devoted myself to investigate how the coral reef creatures have evolved and respond to a rapid changing environments. As a Group Leader of Marine Climate Change Unit, I'm working on the front line of climate change biology to learn how tropical fish (especially fish of the Ryukyu Islands) behave and acclimate by ocean warming.

 

Roger Huerlimann, Postdoctoral Scholar
roger.huerlimann at oist.jp

Twitter @RogerHuerlimann

Roger Huerlimann is a post-doctoral researcher in the Marine Climate Change Unit. Before joining OIST, Roger completed a PhD at James Cook University (JCU) in Australia, and spent the next five years there working as a post-doc in the Center for Sustainable Tropical Fisheries and Aquaculture and the Centre for Tropical Water and Aquatic Ecosystem Research (TropWATER). During this time, Roger worked on several commercial important aquaculture (barramundi, black tiger prawn, and silver lipped pearl oyster) and fisheries species (coral trouts), as well as other marine species (green sea turtles, hammerhead sharks and sawfish). Roger has extensive experience in carrying out and supervising molecular biology and genomics related research from the laboratory through to completing all required bioinformatic analyses. This includes sequencing, assembly and annotation of genomes and transcriptomes, metabarcoding (bacterial 16S, fungal ITS, eukaryotic 12S or COI), viral/bacterial metagenomics and eDNA research (field, lab and analysis protocols).

Erina Kawai, Research Unit and Field Technician
erina.kawai at oist.jp

Twitter @aroeriiiiina

I graduated from the University of Ryukyu with an MSc in Marine Biology. My main jobs at the Marine Climate Change Unit are, 1) breeding coral reef fish, 2) assit all unit's members with field work and fish collection in Japan and around the world and 3) to make coworkers smile. I love the sea, scuba diving, dogs, sweets and Okinawa.

 

Jeffrey Jolly, Research Unit Technician
jeffrey.jolly at oist.jp

Twitter @ravasi_lab

I’m happy to share my background in molecular biology, marine fieldwork, and animal husbandry as a member of the Marine Climate Change Unit. I originally joined OIST in 2016 as the manager of the cephalopod operations in Daniel Rokhsar’s Molecular Genetics Unit where I worked to pioneer the emerging laboratory model cephalopod, Euprymna berryi, and helped describe several unknown Okinawan species of cephalopods. I’m originally from Florida where I earned my BSc in pre-medicine with a focus in molecular biology at the University of West Florida. After graduating I joined Hui-Min Chung’s cell signaling laboratory as a research assistant while simultaneously becoming peripherally involved in marine science research. I’m interested in being on the leading edge of climate change research and learning more about life in the sea. I usually spend my free time doing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, or in the water surfing, freediving, or SCUBA diving.

Rada Neiman, Research Assistant
rada.neiman at oist.jp

Twitter @ravasi_lab

I graduated from Ben Gurion University in Israel, with a Bachelor Degree in Medical Laboratory Science, where I did bioinformatics research, and worked at the local hospital. I then joined a material engineering lab at Penn State University. Now, I am tending to the lovely animals in the marine research labs here at OIST! Having lived a few years on this beautiful island, it has become a character in my family’s life, with its own personality and quirks. Every day, I continue my conversation with it, by exploring its hidden places.

 

Michael Izumiyama, Graduate Student
michael.izumiyama at oist.jp

Twitter @ravasi_lab

I graduated from San Francisco State University with my MSc in Marine Biology, where I looked at the reproductive strategy of surfperches, a unique family of fishes that give live birth. Fishes have always had a special place in my heart, and I am particularly interested in evolution and speciation in fishes. My hobbies are diving, swimming, and fishing, but I also enjoy time outside of the water and love a good laugh!

 

Billy Moore, Graduate Student
billy.moore at oist.jp

Twitter @ravasi_lab

I completed an undergraduate degree at Swansea University, before graduating from the University of Essex with an MSc in Tropical Marine Biology. During my studies I completed internships at the University of Western Australia and The Observatoire Oceanologique de Villefranche, where I investigated the effects of ocean acidification on coral and coralline algae from extreme environments. I am now a first year PhD student in the Ravasi Unit where I will investigate the impacts of environmental change on coral reef fish. I love all sports, the ocean and exploring new exciting places, making Okinawa the perfect place for me!

 

Jodi Thomas, Visiting Research Student
jodi.thomas at oist.jp | jodi.thomas at my.jcu.edu.au

Twitter @jodithea2

I am a PhD candidate at James Cook University, Australia, supervised by Prof. Philip Munday and Dr. Sue-Ann Watson, and collaborating with the Marine Climate Change Unit at OIST. My thesis is investigating the neurobiological mechanisms through which elevated CO2 affects marine invertebrate behaviours, focusing on squid. I completed my Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Neuroscience at the University of Otago, New Zealand. My honours project, and following work as a research assistant, focused on the neuroendocrine regulatory and molecular mechanisms underlying female-to-male sex change in sequentially hermaphroditic fish. I am interested in the intersection of neuroscience and zoology, and the role of the brain in behaviour and phenotypic plasticity. Outside of research, I enjoy craft projects including pottery, sewing and candle making. I also enjoy getting into the outdoors and camping.

 

Yoko Shintani, Research Unit Administrator
yoko.shintani at oist.jp

Twitter @yoko_the_ocean

I joined OIST in April 2018 coming from working in scientific publishing at Nature Japan in Tokyo. My role at the Marine Climate Change Unit is to provide administrative support to Prof. Timothy Ravasi and the other unit members, helping them to smoothly reach their research goals. I'm truly delighted to work close to marine scientists while embracing the stanning marine environment surrounding Okinawa and the Ryukyu archipelago. My passions are the ocean and Wushu.