Faculty Directory
Luisa Marcelino

Research Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Lecturer of Civil and Environmental Engineering


2145 Sheridan Road
Tech A330
Evanston, IL 60208-3109

847-491-4035Email Luisa Marcelino


Marcelino Research Website


Civil and Environmental Engineering

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Ph.D. Molecular Biology/Genetics University of Lisbon, Portugal, degree in absentia through MIT, Cambridge, MA 

B.S./M.S. Plant Biotechnology and Molecular Biology, University of Lisbon, Portugal

Research Interests

Effects of global climate change in the dynamics of biological partnerships involving microbes, in particular reef-forming corals and their associated algae; light scattering and propagation in coral tissue and skeleton; characterization of microbes at the cell and genetic level; characterization of the symbiotic relationship and of its limitations (i.e., coral bleaching when corals undergo thermal stress)

Selected Publications

    1. Swain, T. D., Lax, S., Backman, V., Marcelino, L. A. 2020, Uncovering the role of Symbiodiniaceae assemblage composition and abundance in coral bleaching response by minimizing sampling and evolutionary biases, BMC Microbiology 20, 1, 124, 10.1186/s12866-020-01765-z
    2. Spicer G.L.C.*, Eid A.*, Wangpraseurt D., Swain T.D., Winkelmann J.A.*, Yi J., Kühl, Marcelino L.A., Backman V., Measuring light scattering and absorption in corals with Inverse Spectroscopic Optical Coherence Tomography (ISOCT): a new tool for non-invasive monitoring, Scientific Reports 9:14148 (2019)
    3. Swain T.D., Lax S., Lake N.*, Grooms H.*, Backman V., Marcelino L.A., Relating coral skeletal structures at different length scales to growth, light availability to Symbiodinium, and thermal bleaching, Frontiers in Marine Science 5, 450 (2018)
    4. Swain T.D., Bold E.C.*, Osborn P.C.*, Baird. A.H., Westneat M.W., Backman V., Marcelino L.A. Physiological integration of coral colonies is correlated with bleaching resistance, Mar Ecol Prog Ser, 586: 1–10 (2018) [Feature Article]
    5. Swain TD, Westneat WM, Backman V, Marcelino LA. Phylogenetic analysis of symbiont transmission mechanisms reveal evolutionary patterns in thermotolerance and host specificity that enhance bleaching resistance among vertically transmitted Symbiodinium. European Journal of Phycology 53, 1-17 (2018)
    6. Swain, T.D., DuBois, E.*, Goldberg, S.J. *, Backman V., Marcelino, L.A., Bleaching response of coral species in the context of assemblage response, Coral Reefs 36: 395–400 (2017).
    7. Swain T.D, Vega-Perkins J.B. *, Oestreich W. *, Triebold C. *, DuBois E.*, Henss J., Baird A, Siple M., Backman V., Marcelino L.A. Differential Bleaching Among 374 Coral Taxa – role of measurement uncertainty, environmental factors and intrinsic holobiont factors, Coral bleaching response index: a new tool to standardize and compare susceptibility to thermal bleaching, Glob Chang Biol. 2016 Apr 13. doi: 10.1111/gcb.13276.
    8. Swain T.D., DuBois E.*, Gomes, A.*, Stoyneva V.P.*, Radosevich A.J.*, Henss J., Wagner M.E.*, Velazquez E.*, Traub J., Kennedy B.J.*, Janczak C.M., Grigorescu A.A., Westneat M.W., Sanborn K., Levine S., Schick M., Parsons G., Rogers J.D., Backman V., Marcelino L.A. Skeletal light scattering decreases bleaching susceptibility of reef-building corals, BMC Ecol. 2016 Mar 21;16(1):10. doi: 10.1186/s12898-016-0061-4.
    9. Swain T.D, Chandler J.*, Backman V., Marcelino L.A., Consensus thermotolerance ranking for 110 Symbiodinium phylotypes: an exemplar utilization of a novel iterative partial rank aggregation tool with broad application potential. Functional Ecology, 2016 July doi: 10.1111/1365-2435.12694
    10. Marcelino L.A., Westneat M., Stoyneva V.*, Henss J., Rogers J.D., Radosevich A.*, Turzhitsky V.*, Siple M.*, Fang A.*, Swain T.D., Fung J.* and Backman V. U Light scattering in coral skeleton - evolutionary trends in coral bleaching and in light amplification, PLoS One, 2013; 8 :e61492