Ellie Bergstrom

Ellie Profile

Contact Details

Coral Reef Algae Lab
Griffith School of Environment & Australian Rivers Institute – Coast & Estuaries

Address: Room 0.32, Building N13 (Environment 1), Nathan Campus / Griffith University / 170 Kessels Road, Brisbane, Nathan QLD 4111,
tel:  + 61 7 373 57337
email: ellie.bergstrom@griffithuni.edu.au

Bio & Research Interests

Being from Chicago, USA I didn’t exactly grow up near the ocean, but always had a thing for water and plants! I started my biological training at the University of Minnesota and specialized in terrestrial plant physiological ecology. Two key study abroad semesters in Mérida, Venezuela marked the beginning of my fascination with tropical vegetation. After completing my Bachelor of Science I decided it was time to move to the ocean. During my Masters degree in Florianopolis, Brazil I researched the effects of ocean acidification and temperature rise on calcifying algae and the role of seagrasses as potential local remediation. As a current PhD candidate associated with the Australian Rivers Institute at Griffith University, I will continue to study the effects of climate change on calcifying algae utilizing marine mesocosm structures. I am especially interested in looking at crustose coralline algae (CCA) with different evolutionary histories and pinpointing physiological traits in order to see if they possess adaptations to acidification and warming. However, will these adaptations suffice under the current rapidly increasing anthropogenic CO2 concentrations? This type of research is crucial to understanding the future of reef environments. CCA hold a niche that is key to the diversity of reefs, which ultimately is very valuable to the human race based on the innumerable resources that reefs provide.


  • MSc in Biology of Fungi, Algae and Plants from the Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, Florianopolis, Brasil
  • BSc in Ecology, Evolution and Behavior from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, USA



  • Smith, C.M., M.G. Gei, E. Bergstrom, K.K. Becklund, J.M. Becknell, B.G. Waring, L.K. Werden, and J.S. Powers. (2017). Effects of soil type and light on height growth, biomass partitioning, and nitrogen dynamics of 22 species of tropical dry forest tree seedlings: comparisons between legumes and non-legumes. American Journal of Botany, 104 (3), 399-410.
  • Horta, P. A., Sissini, M. N., Bergstrom, E., Freire, V., Bastos, E., Martins, G., de Lucena, L. A., Martins, C., Barufi, J.B., Rorig, L., Riul, P. & Gurgel, C. F. Papel das Algas nos Recifes e as Consequências das Interferências Antrópicas. In Conhecendo os Recifes Brasileiros: Rede de Pesquisas Coral Vivo. (Carla Zilberberg et al. ed.) 157-168 (Museu Nacional – Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, 2016).
  • Gorman, D., Turra, A., Bergstrom, E. & Horta P. (2016). Possible poleward expansion of a tropical seagrass (Halophila decipiens) in the Western Atlantic (Brazil). Aquatic Botany, 132, 30-36.
  • Horta, P. A., Amado-Filho, G. M., Berchez, F., Nunes, J. M., Scherner, F., Pereira, S., Riul, P., Lotufo, T., Peres, L., Sissini, M., Bastos, E., Rosa, J., Munoz, P., Martins, C., Gouvea, L., Carvalho, V., Bergstrom, E., Schubert, N., Bahia, R. G., Rodrigues, A.C., Rorig, L., Barufi, J., & Figueiredo, M. (2016). Rhodoliths in Brazil: Current knowledge and potential impacts of climate change. Brazilian Journal of Oceanography, 64 (2), 117-136.
  • Kerr, R., da Cunha, L. C., Kikuchi, R. K., Horta, P. A., Ito, R. G., Müller, M. N., Orselli, I. B., Lencina-Avila, J. M., de Orte, M. R., Sordo, L., Pinheiro, B. R., Bonou, F. K., Schubert, N., Bergstrom, E., Copertino, M. S. (2015). The western South Atlantic Ocean in a high-CO2 world: current measurement capabilities and perspectives. Environmental management, 57 (3), 740-752.
  • Costa, I., Horta, P.A., Bergstrom, E. R., & Nunes, J. M. (2014). Taxonomic study of crustose coralline algae of the northeastern Brazilian coast. Phytotaxa, 190(1), 130-161.