Jessica Agius, PhD Candidate, Christmas Island reptile health

Jessica Agius
Jessica Agius, PhD Candidate


Jess Agius is a PhD student at the University of Sydney, investigating and combating an emerging bacterial disease that is threatening endangered Christmas Island reptiles. Jess graduated from the University of Sydney with First Class Honours in Bachelor of Animal and Veterinary Bioscience, majoring in Animal Health and Disease. Her Honours project involved the identification and early characterisation of this newly discovered bacterium found in two critically endangered Christmas Island Reptiles and two invasive reptile species on the island.  This research is published in the open access journal Plos One and available via

Jess aims to develop a comprehensive understanding of the ecology and pathogenesis of this unusual bacterium to provide science-based advice to natural resource and biosecurity managers. 

Supervisors: Associate Prof. David Phalen (University of Sydney) and Dr Karrie Rose (Australian Registry of Wildlife Health)