Kristin Aleklett (PhD)
I grew up in Trosa, Sweden, and already as a kid, I was captured by nature and desperately wanted to know more about how it functioned. I watched endless nature shows, made my own floral collections and set up population studies of snails in the back yard.
I started my academic career at Lund University, Sweden in the field of Human ecology which led me into doing a BSc in Biology. Since then, my focus of study has been ecology, with a very wide span of courses ranging from marine mammals and paleontology to behavioral ecology, systematics of bryophytes and plant ecology.
Through my bachelor and master thesis I worked together with Professor Håkan Wallander in the fascinating field of microbial ecology. We investigated how differing nitrogen content of organic material affects arbuscular mycorrhizal colonization in a sand dune system.
In 2011 I moved to Canada, where I did my PhD in the lab of Dr Miranda Hart at UBC-O in Kelowna, BC. The primary research interest of my PhD was to find out how different events in a plant’s life affect the assembly of its microbial communities. Does what happens to a seedling affect the microbiota it will cooperate with as a grown up plant? Do some individuals possess a more beneficial microbiota than others and can it be passed on between generations? These are some of the questions I would like to answer. (You can read more about my PhD experiments here).
Currently I am working as a postdoc in the Microbial Ecology group at Lund University with Dr Edith Hammer. We are developing artificial soil systems through microfluidics for studying fungal foraging and carbon storage (read more about the SoilChip project here).