Dr. Christina Moon

Senior Scientist

E: Christina.Moon@agresearch.co.nz


PhD Molecular Biology, Massey University

BSc (Hons) Genetics and Molecular Biology, Victoria University of Wellington

BSc Genetics and Molecular Biology, Victoria University of Wellington

Research interests & activities

My main research focus has been in exploring the range of activities that rumen microbes possess for degrading fibre in the rumen. An overarching goal of this work is to provide new opportuntities to improve feed digestibility and ruminant productivity. Ruminal fibre degradation is mediated by a
complex community of rumen microbes that produce the enzymes and bioactivities primarily responsible for degrading fibrous feed materials. We have used a range of approaches, including metagenomics and genomics, to gain a better understanding of the fibrolytic microbes in the rumen, and the fibre-degrading activities they possess.
I also have a longstanding interest in microbial evolution, and the use of molecular genetics and genomics to unravel the genetic causes of microbial adaptation to different environments.

Professional Memberships

  • New Zealand Microbiological Society
  • New Zealand Society ofAnimal Production


Shi W, Moon C, Leahy S, Kang D, Froula J, Kittelmann S, Fan C, Deutsch S, Gagic D, Seedorf H, Kelly W, Atua R, Sang C, Soni P, Li D,  Pinares-Patiño C, McEwan J, Janssen P, Chen F, Visel A, Wang Z, Attwood G, Rubin E (2014). Methane yield phenotypes linked to differential gene expression in the sheep rumen microbiome. Genome Research 24(9):1517-25.

Gagic D, Maclean PH, Li D, Attwood GT, Moon CD (2014). Improving the genetic representation of rare taxa within complex microbial communities using DNA normalisation methods. Molecular Ecology Resources doi: 10.1111/1755-0998.12321.

Ciric M, Moon CD, Leahy SC, Creevey CJ, Altermann E, Attwood GT, Rakonjac J, Gagic D (2014). Metasecretome-selective phage display approach for mining the functional potential of a rumen microbial community. BMC Genomics 15:356.

Li D, Leahy S, Henderson G, Kelly W, Cookson A, Attwood G, Moon C (2014). Atypical bacterial rRNA operon structure is prevalent within the Lachnospiraceae, and use of the 16S-23S rRNA internal transcribed spacer region for the rapid identification of ruminal Butyrivibrio and Pseudobutyrivibrio strains. Annals of Microbiology 64(4):1623-1631.

Till M, Goldstone D, Card G, Attwood G, Moon C, Arcus V (2014). Structural analysis of the GH43 enzyme Xsa43E from Butyrivibrio proteoclasticus. Acta Crystallographica Section F 70(9).6.