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Lab Members

(321) 525-1047

Jamie Foster

Jamie Foster is an Associate Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Cell Science at the University of Florida. Dr. Foster’s research lab is located at the Space Life Sciences Lab - Exploration Park, Merritt Island, FL


Education: Ph.D., 2000, Zoology, Mechanisms of developmental remodeling in the symbiosis between the Hawaiian squid Euprymna scolopes and the luminescent bacterium Vibrio fischeri, University of Hawai'i; M.S., 1996, Biological Sciences University of Southern California; B.S., 1992, Zoology, University of Massachusetts, Amherst.


Research Interests: Dr. Foster is dedicated to understanding the complex interactions of symbiotic microbes with their surrounding environment.

Giorgio Casaburi

Giorgio Casaburi is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Microbiology and Cell Science at the University of florida


Education: Ph.D. in Bioinformatics and computational biology, University of Naples Federico II, Italy; M.S. Master of Science in Medical Biotechnology, University of Naples Federico II, Italy; Bachelor of Science in Biotechnology, University of Naples Federico II, Italy.


Research Interests: My primary research interest is in the development and application of novel bioinformatics techniques to high-throughput DNA sequencing data analysis for the advancement of human medicine. Toward this end, my research to date has focused on human microbiome and human micro-interference RNA (miRNA) profile analysis, and has involved me collecting samples during clinical procedures, applying molecular biology techniques to prepare those samples, operating “next-generation” DNA sequencing instruments to generate data, and developing and applying bioinformatics techniques to analyze that data.

Artemis (Dyanna) Louyakis

Artemis (Dyanna) Louyakis is a graduate student in the Department of Microbiology and Cell Science of the University of Florida.


Education: B.S. 2009, Biological Science, Murdoch University


Research Interests: Dyanna’s research interests include examining the biota of extreme environments to facilitate the understanding of microbial origins, the search for evidence of life outside of Earth, and microbial genomics and transcriptomics. Currently, she is working on the thrombolites from Highborne Cay, the Bahamas to understand functional gene expression related to calcium carbonate precipitation through a metatranscriptomic approach.

Joany Babilonia

Joany Babilonia is a graduate student in the Department of Microbiology and Cell Science of the University of Florida


Education: B.S. 2010, Molecular and Microbiology, Biotechnology; minor in Religious Studies from the University of Central Florida.


Research Interests: Joany's research interests include microbial genomics and the exploration of early life on Earth. She is currently characterizing the core microbiome of stromatolites from spatially diverse sites and from distinct aquatic environments.

Lexi Duscher

Lexi Duscher is undertaking a research and training internship at the University of Florida Space Life Science Lab.


Education: B.S. 2013, Marine Science and Environmental Studies, Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, FL.


Research Interests: Lexi's is interested in examining the effects of environmental stress on mutualistic associations between animal hosts and their symbionts. Lexi's current work involves delineating the impact of the space environment (i.e., microgravity) on the immune system of the squid Euprymna scolopes, immune system in the presence and absence of symbiotic microbes.

Jamie Foster Ph.D.

University of Florida

Dept. Microbiology & Cell Science

Space Life Science Lab

Merritt Island, FL 32953

Phone: 321-261-3772

Jamie Foster :: Copyright © 2006-2014


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