Michaela is a Molecular Ecologist and Microbiologist. Her research has a strong focus on host-microbe interactions with direct applications to wildlife health and conservation.

Dr. Blyton has worked on KoRV for the past 5 years and in that time she has made major contributions to the field including 1) contributing to a study demonstrating that exogenous KoRV is primarily transmitted from mothers to joeys, 2) providing compelling evidence that KoRV is associated with the risk of disease and 3) performing a comprehensive study into KoRV biogeography. She has also led research into the koala’s gut microbiome over the last eight years. She has pioneered the development of a faecal transplant process that can alter the koala gut microbiome and may aid koala recovery after antibiotic treatment. Her holistic approach to koala conservation has also seen her developed a new SNP based method for the determination of koala dietary eucalyptus species from scats. She has worked on several commensal systems including those of E. coli and various vertebrate hosts and studied the behavioural ecology and socio-biology of mountain brushtail possums as part of her PhD. Her research is built on a strong foundation of hands-on animal studies in the field that are combined with cutting edge molecular and in vitro techniques. A hallmark of her approach is the use of sophisticated statistical and bioinformatic approaches that allow her to disentangle the complexities of natural systems.


  • Bachelor of Science, Macquarie University
  • Bachelor of Science  (Honors year), Australian National University
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Australian National University