An research team has received funding from the Great Barrier Reef Foundation to develop bacteria for corals.
An research team has received funding from the Great Barrier Reef Foundation to develop bacteria for corals.

Coral ‘probiotics’ could prevent bleaching on GBR

A SCIENTIFIC study aimed at developing coral "probiotics" that could prevent bleaching is being taken to the next level.

An international research team has received funding from the Great Barrier Reef Foundation to develop bacteria for corals to protect them from heat stress.

The funding will help the team, which includes scientists from Brazil, the US, the UK and James Cook University will be taking native beneficial bacteria already present naturally in the Reef, and use them in a targeted way to increase the corals' resilience.

Anna Marsden, Managing Director of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation appearing at an Inquiry into the Great Barrier Reef 2050 Partnership Program in the Environment and Communications References Committee at Parliament House in Canberra. Picture Kym Smith
Anna Marsden, Managing Director of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation appearing at an Inquiry into the Great Barrier Reef 2050 Partnership Program in the Environment and Communications References Committee at Parliament House in Canberra. Picture Kym Smith

The team will be able to accelerate their research and seek new methods to scale up the application of the science for use on coral reefs.

Great Barrier Reef Foundation managing director Anna Marsden (above) said: "The idea of giving probiotics to corals to improve their health is just like people taking probiotic yoghurts full of good bacteria to counter the negative effects of taking antibiotics when they're treating an infection."



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