Dr Nicholas Coleman

Senior Lecturer in Microbiology

G08 - Biochemistry and Microbiology Building
The University of Sydney

Telephone +61 2 9351 6047
Fax +61 2 9351 4571

Biographical details

Dr Nick Coleman was appointed Lecturer in the School of Molecular Bioscience in 2006, with teaching and research responsibilities in environmental and medical microbiology.

Nick has lectured to 2nd and 3rd year students across many degree programs including B.Sc., B.Med.Sci, B.Pharm., B.VetSci. and B Ag.Sci, and he has been a course coordinator and prac class coordinator for MICR2022, MICR3022, and MICR3042. Nick did his PhD in Trevor Duxbury's lab at the University of Sydney, studying explosives-biodegrading bacteria. This was the first work to investigate the aerobic biodegradation of the energetic compound RDX, and we discovered that a cytochrome p450 enzyme was responsible for this activity. After graduating in 2001, Nick worked as a postdoc for 3 years at Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida, USA. The highlight of this work was the isolation of the first and thus-far only known bacterium able to grow on dichloroethene as a carbon source (Polaromonas strain JS666) - this bacterium has now been genome-sequenced. Nick returned to Sydney and worked for 3 years as a postdoc in Andy Holmes' in SMB, studying mobile genetic elements in Pseudomonas stutzeri. This led to a new method for quantifying integron activities that could be applied in environmental bacteria. Nick's research has been supported by ARC Discovery grants, by a NSW Environmental Trust grant, and by collaborations with industry partners (eg. Orica).

Research interests

Research is in the areas of environmental microbiology and biotechnology, with a particular focus on molecular genetic analysis of bacteria capable of degrading pollutants. Applications of this work include the bioremediation of contaminated sites and the development of bacterial biocatalysts for other purposes (eg. pharmaceutical synthesis). Microorganisms able to biodegrade toxic pollutants are intrinsically interesting due to what they can teach us about evolution, especially the ways in which Nature adapts to meet chemical challenges. This work increasingly involves analysis of mobile genetic elements (MGEs, eg. plasmids), which are key players in bacterial adaptation to both industrial pollutants and antibiotics. A better understanding of MGEs would allow us to better predict and manage bacterial evolution, whether this is controlling the spread of antibiotic resistance, understanding the fate of recombinant DNA in the environment, or harnessing the power of MGEs for biotechnology. Other areas of interest include metagenomics, microbial ecology and diversity, and agricultural microbiology.

Teaching and supervision

Lecturer in MICR2, MICR3, PHAR2, BMED2 courses. Course coordinator of MICR3X42 (Molecular Microbiology Research Skills).

Keywords

Biochemistry; Molecular biology; Genetics; Microbiology; Bacteriology

Selected grants

2012

  • Determinants of substrate preferences and environmental applications of the copper membrane monooxygenases; Holmes A, Coleman N, Bodrossy L, Abell G; Australian Research Council (ARC)/Discovery Projects (DP).

2010

  • Bioremediation for organochlorine-contaminated groundwater; Coleman N; Environmental Trust/Environmental Research Program - Major Grants.

2008

  • Bacterial monooxygenases as new biocatalysts; Holmes A, Coleman N, Guss M; Australian Research Council (ARC)/Discovery Projects (DP).
  • Development and optimization of combined plant/microbe technologies for bioremediation of soils contaminated with hydrocarbons and heavy metals; Singh B, Coleman N; Department of Education, Science and Training (Federal)/Australia-India Strategic Research Fund (AISRF).

2005

  • Recovery and characterization of mono-oxygenases for biocatalysis and bioremediation through development of Novel DNA and protein based technology; Coleman N, Holmes A; Australian Research Council (ARC)/Discovery Projects (DP).

2003

  • The origins of bacterial diversity - testing the role of integrons; DVC Research/Postdoctoral Fellowship (Sesqui).

Selected publications

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Journals

  • Coleman, N., Harris, J., Wilson, N., Holmes, A. (2014). Insertion sequence ISPst4 activates pUC plasmid replication in Pseudomonas stutzeri. FEMS Microbiology Letters, 356(2), 242-249. [More Information]
  • Liew, E., Tong, D., Coleman, N., Holmes, A. (2014). Mutagenesis of the hydrocarbon monooxygenase indicates a metal centre in subunit-C, and not subunit-B, is essential for copper-containing membrane monooxygenase activity. Microbiology, 160(Pt 6), 1267-1277. [More Information]
  • Martin, K., Ozsvar, J., Coleman, N. (2014). SmoXYB1C1Z of Mycobacterium sp. strain NBB4: a soluble methane monooxygenase (sMMO)-like enzyme, active on C2 to C4 alkanes and alkenes. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 80(18), 5801-5806. [More Information]
  • Munro, J., Liew, E., Coleman, N. (2013). Adaptation of a Membrane Bioreactor to 1,2-Dichloroethane Revealed by 16S rDNA Pyrosequencing and dhlA qPCR. Environmental Science & Technology, 47(23), 13668-13676. [More Information]
  • Dingsdag, S., Coleman, N. (2013). Bacterial communities on food court tables and cleaning equipment in a shopping mall. Epidemiology and Infection, 141(8), 1647-1651. [More Information]
  • Cheung, S., McCarl, V., Holmes, A., Coleman, N., Rutledge, P. (2013). Substrate range and enantioselectivity of epoxidation reactions mediated by the ethene-oxidising Mycobacterium strain NBB4. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 97(3), 1131-1140. [More Information]
  • Crighton, T., Hoile, R., Coleman, N. (2012). Comparison of quantitative PCR and culture-based methods for evaluating dispersal of Bacillus thuringiensis endospores at a bioterrorism hoax crime scene. Forensic Science International, 219(1-3), 88-95. [More Information]
  • Chow, B., Baume, A., Lok, P., Cao, Y., Coleman, N., Ruys, A., Boughton, P. (2012). Development of 3D Antibiotic-Eluting Bioresorbable Scaffold with Attenuating Envelopes. Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials, and Tissue Engineering, 15, 55-62. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Le, N., Ly, M., Ogawa, H., McCarl, V., Wilson, N., Holmes, A. (2012). Hydrocarbon monooxygenase in Mycobacterium: recombinant expression of a member of the ammonia monooxygenase superfamily. The ISME Journal, 6(1), 171-182. [More Information]
  • Le, N., Coleman, N. (2011). Biodegradation of vinyl chloride, cis-dichloroethene and 1,2-dichloroethane in the alkene/alkane-oxidising Mycobacterium strain NBB4. Biodegradation, 22(6), 1095-1108. [More Information]
  • Ly, M., Liew, E., Le, N., Coleman, N. (2011). Construction and evaluation of pMycoFos, a fosmid shuttle vector for Mycobacterium spp. with inducible gene expression and copy number control. Journal of Microbiological Methods, 86(3), 320-326. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Wilson, N., Barry, K., Brettin, T., Bruce, D., Copeland, A., Dalin, E., Detter, J., del Rio, T., Goodwin, L., et al (2011). Genome sequence of the Ethene-and Vinyl Chloride-Oxidizing Actinomycete Nocardioides sp. Strain JS614. Journal of Bacteriology, 193(13), 3399-3400. [More Information]
  • Gestal, A., Liew, E., Coleman, N. (2011). Natural transformation with synthetic gene cassettes: new tools for integron research and biotechnology. Microbiology, 157(2), 3349-3360. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Yau, S., Wilson, N., Nolan, L., Migocki, M., Ly, M., Crossett, B., Holmes, A. (2011). Untangling the multiple monooxygenases of Mycobacterium chubuense strain NBB4, a versatile hydrocarbon degrader. Environmental Microbiology Reports, 3(3), 297-307. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Yau, S., Wilson, N., Nolan, L., Migocki, M., Ly, M., Crossett, B., Holmes, A. (2011). Untangling the multiple monooxygenases of Mycobacterium chubuense strain NBB4, a versatile hydrocarbon degrader. Environmental Microbiology Reports, 3(3), 297-307. [More Information]
  • Mattes, T., Alexander, A., Coleman, N. (2010). Aerobic Biodegradation of the Chloroethenes: Pathways, Enzymes, Ecology, and Evolution. FEMS Microbiology Reviews, 34(4), 445-475. [More Information]
  • Jin, Y., Cheung, S., Coleman, N., Mattes, T. (2010). Association of Missense Mutations in Epoxyalkane Coenzyme M Transferase with Adaptation of Mycobacterium sp. Strain JS623 to Growth on Vinyl Chloride. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 76(11), 3413-3419. [More Information]
  • Johnston, J., Coleman, N., Denyer, G., Gysbers, V., Hancock, D., Rohrlach, B. (2009). Achieving Collective Excellence in Learning, Teaching and Assessment. Synergy, 29, 30-33.
  • Baume, A., Coleman, N., Boughton, P. (2009). Methods for Achieving Soft Tissue Scaffold Sterility. Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials, and Tissue Engineering, 4, 59-69.
  • Holmes, A., Coleman, N. (2008). Evolutionary ecology and multidisciplinary approaches to prospecting for monooxygenases as biocatalysts. Antonie van Leeuwenhoek: international journal of general and molecular microbiology, 94(DOI 10.1007/s10482-008-9227-1), 75-84. [More Information]
  • Mattes, T., Alexander, A., Richardson, P., Munk, A., Han, C., Stothard, P., Coleman, N. (2008). The Genome of Polaromonas sp. strain JS666: Insights into the Evolution of a Hydrocarbon- and Xenobiotic-Degrading Bacterium, and Features of Relevance to Biotechnology. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 74(20), 6405-6416. [More Information]
  • Mattes, T., Coleman, N., Chuang, A., Rogers, A., Spain, J., Gossett, J. (2007). Mechanism controlling the extended lag period associated with vinyl chloride starvation in Nocardioides sp strain JS614. Archives of Microbiology, 187(3), 217-226. [More Information]
  • Priestley, J., Coleman, N., Duxbury, T. (2006). Growth rate and nutrient limitation affect the transport of Rhodococcus sp strain DN22 through sand. Biodegradation, 17(6), 571-576. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Le, N., Holmes, A. (2006). Soluble di-iron monooxygenase gene diversity in soils, sediments and ethene enrichments. Environmental Microbiology, 8(7), 1228-1239. [More Information]
  • Mattes, T., Coleman, N., Spain, J., Gossett, J. (2005). Physiological and molecular genetic analyses of vinyl chloride and ethene biodegradation in Nocardioides sp. strain JS614. Archives of Microbiology, 183(2), 95-106. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Holmes, A. (2005). The native Pseudomonas stutzeri strain Q chromosomal integron can capture and express cassette-associated genes. Microbiology, 151(6), 1853-1864. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Tetu, S., Wilson, N., Holmes, A. (2004). An unusual integron in Treponema denticola. Microbiology, 150(11), 3524-3526.
  • Coleman, N., Spain, J., Duxbury, T. (2002). Evidence that RDX biodegradation by Rhodococcus strain DN22 is plasmid-borne and involves a cytochrome p-450. Journal of Applied Microbiology, 93(3), 463-472.

2014

  • Coleman, N., Harris, J., Wilson, N., Holmes, A. (2014). Insertion sequence ISPst4 activates pUC plasmid replication in Pseudomonas stutzeri. FEMS Microbiology Letters, 356(2), 242-249. [More Information]
  • Liew, E., Tong, D., Coleman, N., Holmes, A. (2014). Mutagenesis of the hydrocarbon monooxygenase indicates a metal centre in subunit-C, and not subunit-B, is essential for copper-containing membrane monooxygenase activity. Microbiology, 160(Pt 6), 1267-1277. [More Information]
  • Martin, K., Ozsvar, J., Coleman, N. (2014). SmoXYB1C1Z of Mycobacterium sp. strain NBB4: a soluble methane monooxygenase (sMMO)-like enzyme, active on C2 to C4 alkanes and alkenes. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 80(18), 5801-5806. [More Information]

2013

  • Munro, J., Liew, E., Coleman, N. (2013). Adaptation of a Membrane Bioreactor to 1,2-Dichloroethane Revealed by 16S rDNA Pyrosequencing and dhlA qPCR. Environmental Science & Technology, 47(23), 13668-13676. [More Information]
  • Dingsdag, S., Coleman, N. (2013). Bacterial communities on food court tables and cleaning equipment in a shopping mall. Epidemiology and Infection, 141(8), 1647-1651. [More Information]
  • Cheung, S., McCarl, V., Holmes, A., Coleman, N., Rutledge, P. (2013). Substrate range and enantioselectivity of epoxidation reactions mediated by the ethene-oxidising Mycobacterium strain NBB4. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 97(3), 1131-1140. [More Information]

2012

  • Crighton, T., Hoile, R., Coleman, N. (2012). Comparison of quantitative PCR and culture-based methods for evaluating dispersal of Bacillus thuringiensis endospores at a bioterrorism hoax crime scene. Forensic Science International, 219(1-3), 88-95. [More Information]
  • Chow, B., Baume, A., Lok, P., Cao, Y., Coleman, N., Ruys, A., Boughton, P. (2012). Development of 3D Antibiotic-Eluting Bioresorbable Scaffold with Attenuating Envelopes. Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials, and Tissue Engineering, 15, 55-62. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Le, N., Ly, M., Ogawa, H., McCarl, V., Wilson, N., Holmes, A. (2012). Hydrocarbon monooxygenase in Mycobacterium: recombinant expression of a member of the ammonia monooxygenase superfamily. The ISME Journal, 6(1), 171-182. [More Information]

2011

  • Le, N., Coleman, N. (2011). Biodegradation of vinyl chloride, cis-dichloroethene and 1,2-dichloroethane in the alkene/alkane-oxidising Mycobacterium strain NBB4. Biodegradation, 22(6), 1095-1108. [More Information]
  • Ly, M., Liew, E., Le, N., Coleman, N. (2011). Construction and evaluation of pMycoFos, a fosmid shuttle vector for Mycobacterium spp. with inducible gene expression and copy number control. Journal of Microbiological Methods, 86(3), 320-326. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Wilson, N., Barry, K., Brettin, T., Bruce, D., Copeland, A., Dalin, E., Detter, J., del Rio, T., Goodwin, L., et al (2011). Genome sequence of the Ethene-and Vinyl Chloride-Oxidizing Actinomycete Nocardioides sp. Strain JS614. Journal of Bacteriology, 193(13), 3399-3400. [More Information]
  • Gestal, A., Liew, E., Coleman, N. (2011). Natural transformation with synthetic gene cassettes: new tools for integron research and biotechnology. Microbiology, 157(2), 3349-3360. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Yau, S., Wilson, N., Nolan, L., Migocki, M., Ly, M., Crossett, B., Holmes, A. (2011). Untangling the multiple monooxygenases of Mycobacterium chubuense strain NBB4, a versatile hydrocarbon degrader. Environmental Microbiology Reports, 3(3), 297-307. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Yau, S., Wilson, N., Nolan, L., Migocki, M., Ly, M., Crossett, B., Holmes, A. (2011). Untangling the multiple monooxygenases of Mycobacterium chubuense strain NBB4, a versatile hydrocarbon degrader. Environmental Microbiology Reports, 3(3), 297-307. [More Information]

2010

  • Mattes, T., Alexander, A., Coleman, N. (2010). Aerobic Biodegradation of the Chloroethenes: Pathways, Enzymes, Ecology, and Evolution. FEMS Microbiology Reviews, 34(4), 445-475. [More Information]
  • Jin, Y., Cheung, S., Coleman, N., Mattes, T. (2010). Association of Missense Mutations in Epoxyalkane Coenzyme M Transferase with Adaptation of Mycobacterium sp. Strain JS623 to Growth on Vinyl Chloride. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 76(11), 3413-3419. [More Information]

2009

  • Johnston, J., Coleman, N., Denyer, G., Gysbers, V., Hancock, D., Rohrlach, B. (2009). Achieving Collective Excellence in Learning, Teaching and Assessment. Synergy, 29, 30-33.
  • Baume, A., Coleman, N., Boughton, P. (2009). Methods for Achieving Soft Tissue Scaffold Sterility. Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials, and Tissue Engineering, 4, 59-69.

2008

  • Holmes, A., Coleman, N. (2008). Evolutionary ecology and multidisciplinary approaches to prospecting for monooxygenases as biocatalysts. Antonie van Leeuwenhoek: international journal of general and molecular microbiology, 94(DOI 10.1007/s10482-008-9227-1), 75-84. [More Information]
  • Mattes, T., Alexander, A., Richardson, P., Munk, A., Han, C., Stothard, P., Coleman, N. (2008). The Genome of Polaromonas sp. strain JS666: Insights into the Evolution of a Hydrocarbon- and Xenobiotic-Degrading Bacterium, and Features of Relevance to Biotechnology. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 74(20), 6405-6416. [More Information]

2007

  • Mattes, T., Coleman, N., Chuang, A., Rogers, A., Spain, J., Gossett, J. (2007). Mechanism controlling the extended lag period associated with vinyl chloride starvation in Nocardioides sp strain JS614. Archives of Microbiology, 187(3), 217-226. [More Information]

2006

  • Priestley, J., Coleman, N., Duxbury, T. (2006). Growth rate and nutrient limitation affect the transport of Rhodococcus sp strain DN22 through sand. Biodegradation, 17(6), 571-576. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Le, N., Holmes, A. (2006). Soluble di-iron monooxygenase gene diversity in soils, sediments and ethene enrichments. Environmental Microbiology, 8(7), 1228-1239. [More Information]

2005

  • Mattes, T., Coleman, N., Spain, J., Gossett, J. (2005). Physiological and molecular genetic analyses of vinyl chloride and ethene biodegradation in Nocardioides sp. strain JS614. Archives of Microbiology, 183(2), 95-106. [More Information]
  • Coleman, N., Holmes, A. (2005). The native Pseudomonas stutzeri strain Q chromosomal integron can capture and express cassette-associated genes. Microbiology, 151(6), 1853-1864. [More Information]

2004

  • Coleman, N., Tetu, S., Wilson, N., Holmes, A. (2004). An unusual integron in Treponema denticola. Microbiology, 150(11), 3524-3526.

2002

  • Coleman, N., Spain, J., Duxbury, T. (2002). Evidence that RDX biodegradation by Rhodococcus strain DN22 is plasmid-borne and involves a cytochrome p-450. Journal of Applied Microbiology, 93(3), 463-472.

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