Dr Elisabeth Deschaseaux

Elisabeth Deschaseaux

T: 0423 602 341
E: deschaseaux@scu.edu.au or elisabeth.deschaseaux@gmail.com

Supervisor: Prof Bradley Eyre

Research interests

My research interest is to investigate the production and emission of dimethylsulfide (DMS), isoprene and other climatically relevant biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) across various marine ecosystems such as coral reefs, mangroves and seagrass beds, which are amongst the highest producers of BVOCs on the planet.

DMS and isoprene are BVOCs of high importance as they can play a role in the Earth climate through contributing to the formation and composition of clouds. However, the relative ability of different marine ecosystems at producing DMS and Isoprene nor the impact of future climatic conditions on the production of these BVOCs across various habitats has been unravelled to date.

Through this project, the cycling of DMS and isoprene will be estimated under future climate change scenarios by comparing pristine and human-impacted sites as well as through series of incubations mimicking future conditions of pH and temperature. Outcomes of this research should help understanding the role of specific marine ecosystems at influencing the Earth climate as well as estimating the consequences of future climatic conditions on their productivity. This findings could have a significant impact on the management of these ecosystems in the future.


I did my Undergraduate in cellular biology and physiology at the University of Bordeaux II (France) and moved to Australia in 2006 to enrol in Honours in applied science at the University of Canberra. My Honours research project was to investigate the effect of variations in temperature and salinity on three biomarkers of stress (antioxidant capacity, lipid peroxidation and lysosomal stability) in the egg masses of rocky-shore gastropods.

I then worked for 2 years as a Research Assistant at the Institute for Applied Ecology, University of Canberra, in the field of freshwater ecology.

I did my PhD at Southern Cross University on the production of dimethylated sulfur compounds (DSCs) in reef-building Acropora corals and associated Symbiodinium, and the role of these DSCs as antioxidants in the coral holobiont.

I worked as a Postdoctoral Researcher within the Climate Change Cluster at the University of Technology where I investigated how stress-induced shifts in the physiological integrity of phytoplankton might alter DMSP production and helped determining how such changes might influence phytoplankton-bacteria interactions in a changing ocean. I was also in charge of operating the gas-chromatograph (GC) with flame photometric detector (GC-FPD) for the analysis of long-term monthly field sampling at Port Hacking and developed new techniques to facilitate the preservation and analysis of DMS and related sulfur compounds in the field.

Publications (Peer-reviewed journal articles only)


Deschaseaux E, Pontasch S, Hill R, Scott A (2017) Dimethylsulfonioproprionate (DMSP) partitioning between the host and symbionts in the sea anemone Entacmaea quadricolor under heat stress is influenced by host phenotype. Submitted to Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology

Deschaseaux E, Hardefeldt J, Jones G, Reichelt-Brushett A (2017) Partitioning of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) between the host and symbiont of the reef-building coral Acropora aspera under zinc exposure. Submitted to Marine Pollution Bulletin

In preparation (draft completed):

Deschaseaux E, Stoltenberg L, Koveke E, Toda K, Eyre B (2017) Dimethylsulfide fluxes from permeable carbonate reef sediments (for Limnology and Oceanography)


Journal articles


Jones G, Curran M, Swan H, Deschaseaux E, Eyre BD (2017) Dimethylsulphide and coral bleaching links to solar radiation, low level clouds and the regulation of seawater temperatures and climate in the Great Carrier Reef, Special Issue of American Journal of Climate Change (in press)

Swan HB, Deschaseaux ESM, Jones GB, Eyre BD (2017) The relative abundance of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) among other zwittwerions in branching coral at Heron Island, southern Great Barrier Reef, Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, 1-15

Swan HB, Jones GB, Deschaseaux ESM, Eyre BD (2017) Coral reef origins of atmospheric dimethylsulfide at Heron Island, southern Great Barrier Reef, Australia, Biogeosciences 14(1), pp. 229-239

Swan HB, Deschaseaux ESM, Jones GB, Eyre BD (2017) Quantification of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) in Acropora spp. of reef-building coral using mass spectrometry with deuterated internal standard, Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 409 (7), 1929-1942

Mallet M, Cravigan L, Miljevic B, Vaattovaara P, Deschaseaux E, Swan H, Jones G, Ristovski Z (2016) Sea spray aerosol in the Great Barrier Reef and the presence of nonvolatile organics, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 121 (12), 7088-7099

Swan HB, Crough RW, Vaattovaara P, Jones GB, Deschaseaux ESM, Eyre BD, Miljevic B, Ristovski ZD (2016) Dimethyl sulfide and other biogenic volatile organic compound emissions from branching coral and reef seawater: potential sources of secondary aerosol over the Great Barrier Reef, Journal of Atmospheric Chemistry, 73 (3), 303-328

Deschaseaux E, Swan H, Jones G (2016) Dimethylated sulfur compounds in coral-reef ecosystems, Special Issue in Environmental Chemistry, 13 (2), 239-251

Pontasch S, Hill R, Deschaseaux E, Fisher PL, Davy SK, Scott A (2014) Photochemical efficiency and antioxidant capacity in relation to Symbiodinium genotype and host phenotype in a symbiotic cnidarian. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 516: 195-208.

Jones GB, Fischer E, Deschaseaux ESM, Harrison PL (2014) The effect of coral bleaching on the cellular concentration of dimethylsulphoniopropionate in reef corals. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 460(0): 19-31.

Deschaseaux ESM, Beltran VH, Jones GB, Deseo MA, Swan HB Harrison PL, Eyre BD (2014) Comparative response of DMS and DMSP concentrations in Symbiodinium clades C1 and D1 under thermal stress. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 459(0): 181-189

Deschaseaux ESM, Kiene RP, Oswald L, Jones GB Deseo MA Swan HB, Eyre BD (2014) Dimethylsulphoxide (DMSO) in biological samples: a comparison of the TiCl3 and NaBH4 reduction methods using headspace analysis. Marine Chemistry, 164(0): 9-15

Deschaseaux ESM, Jones GB, Deseo MA, Shepherd KM, Kiene RP, Swan HB, Harrison PL, Eyre BD (2014) Effects of environmental factors on dimethylated sulphur compounds and their potential role in the antioxidant system of the coral holobiont. Limnology and Oceanography, 59(3): 758-768.

Deschaseaux ESM, Deseo MA, Shepherd KM, Jones GB, Harrison, PL (2013) Air blasting as the optimal approach for the extraction of antioxidants in coral tissue. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 448: 146-148.

Deschaseaux E, Taylor A, Maher W (2011) Measure of stress response induced by temperature and salinity changes on hatched larvae of three marine gastropod species. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 397: 121-128.

Deschaseaux ESM, Taylor AM, Maher WA, Davis AR (2010) Cellular responses of encapsulated embryos to multiple stressors associated with climate change. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 383: 130-136.

Conference proceedings

Vaattovaara P, Swan H, Jones G, Deschaseaux E, Miljevic B, Laaksonen A, Ristovski Z (2013) The contribution of sulfates and oxidized organics in climatically important ultrafine particles at a coral reef. World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology, 82: 902-906.

Deschaseaux E, Jones G, Miljevic B, Ristovski Z, Swan H, Vaattovaara P (2012) Can corals form aerosol particles through volatile sulphur compound emissions? Proceeding of the 12th International Coral Reef Symposium, 2012, Cairns, Australia, 9th-13th July.

Swan HB, Jones GB, Deschaseaux E (2012) Dimethylsulfide, climate and coral reef ecosystems (2012) Proceeding of the 12th International Coral Reef Symposium, 2012, Cairns, Australia, 9th-13th July.

Google scholar profile