Dr Jodie Rummer, marine biologist, James Cook University, Townsville

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08 September 2015

A hot future for sharks

Dr Jodie Rummer swims with sharks for her research. She is fascinated by fish and their ability to deliver oxygen to their muscles 20 to 50 times more efficiently than we can. Her global research into salmon, mackerel, hagfish, and now sharks explains why fish dominate the oceans, and has given her the opportunity to swim with sharks in the world’s largest shark sanctuary, in French Polynesia.

Her L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Fellowship will help her predict how sharks and other fish will cope with rapidly changing oceans. Some will be winners, some will be losers as the climate changes. That’s a problem not just for the oceans, but also for the communities that depend on fish for protein.

“Fish have been on the planet for hundreds of millions of years. It’s up to us to ensure they’re here for the next 100 million years.”



2010 PhD (comparative animal physiology), University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
2004 Master of Science, University of West Florida
1999 Bachelor of Science (Honours), University of West Florida, USA
1997 Associate of Science (Honours), Lincoln Land College, Illinois, USA

Career highlights, awards, fellowships, grants

2015-2017 ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA), Physiological performance of reef fishes under ocean acidification
2015–2016 Chief Investigator, Australian Museum, Lizard Island Reef Research Foundation Fellowship
2015 George A. Bartholomew Award, Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology
 2015 George A. Bartholomew Award presentation, Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology annual meeting, West Palm Beach, USA
 2014 Invited presentation, TEDx talks, James Cook University, Cairns
 2014 Chief Investigator, Institute for Pacific Coral Reefs Fellowship
 2013 International Research Network Biodiversity of Coral Reefs workshop, Groupement de Recherche International (GDRI), Paris, France
 2013 Australian Academy of Sciences, Japan-Australia marine science workshop, Tokyo, Japan
 2013 Principal Investigator, National Geographic Society grant
 2013 Journal of Experimental Biology and Society for Experimental Biology travel and research awards (also received in 2012 and 2008)
 2013 Invited presentation, Ecofisiologia Centro de Investigação Interdisciplinar Marinha e Ambiental (CIIMAR), Porto, Portugal
 2012 Invited presentation, Society for Experimental Biology, Salzburg, Austria
 2011 Visiting Fellow, National Fisheries College Institute of Sustainable Marine Resources, Papua New Guinea
 2011 Australian Research Council Super Science Fellowship
 2010–2011 Collaboration with Professor DJ Randall, Hong Kong, China
 2008 Invited presentation, Young Scientist of the Year Award Symposium, Marseille, France
 2007–2008 Visiting Research Fellow, with Professor M Berenbrink, University of Liverpool, UK

Top five publications

Rummer JL, McKenzie DJ, Innocenti A, Supuran CT, Brauner CJ (2013) Root effect haemoglobin may have evolved to enhance general oxygen delivery, Science 340: 1327–1329. (Impact factor 31.480, 26 citations)

Rummer JL, Couturier CS, Stecyk JAW, Gardiner NM, Kinch JP, Nilsson GE, Munday PL (2014) Life on the edge: Thermal optima for aerobic scope of equatorial reef fishes are close to current day temperatures, Global Change Biology 20: 1055–1066. (Impact factor 8.224, 11 citations)

Rummer JL, Brauner CJ (2011) Plasma-accessible carbonic anhydrase at the tissue of a teleost fish may greatly enhance oxygen delivery: in vitro evidence in rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss, Journal of Experimental Biology 214: 2319–2328. (Impact factor 3.00, 13 citations)

Munday PL, Cheal A, Dixson DL, Rummer JL, Fabricius K (2014) Behavioural impairment in reef fishes caused by ocean acidification at CO2 seeps, Nature Climate Change 4: 487–492. (Impact factor 15.295, 14 citations)

Rummer JL, Isom LL Communicating Science. Chapter 6. In Pritchard, P. & Grant, C. (eds.), Success Strategies from Women in STEM: A Portable Mentor, 2nd edition. Elsevier.

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