Alexis Pey - Research Assistant
Marine Biology and Ecology

Master degree in Marine Biological and Ecology at the Mediterranean Institute of Oceanology (Marseille, France), I obtained in 2012 my Phd Degree in “Fundamental and Applied Sciences” at the University of Nice-Sophia Antipolis (France), with a thesis entitled « Biochemical and physiological responses of temperate marine symbioses to climate warming » (advisors: Pr. Paola Furla and Dr. Pierre-Laurent Merle, UMR 7138, Marine Symbiosis team). Thanks to multidisciplinary approach (Ecology, Biochemistry, Molecular biology, Physiology and Population Genetics), these doctoral studies aimed to better define the answers induced by thermal stress of two Mediterranean symbiotic Cindarians: the white gorgonian Eunicella singularis and the sea anemone Anemonia viridis. These researches allowed me to specialize in these environmental issues concerning conservation and protection of these fundamental species.

In 2010, I obtained my professional diving certification (CAH1B), training organized by the CNRS to the biological station of Roscoff (France), which allowed me to be skilled for various technical diving qualifications. Then, I participated and organized various field missions, that allowed me to establish several collaborations with organizations working on marine conservation and other environmental issues (ECOMERS laboratory, Nice; DIMAR Laboratory, Mediterranean Institute of Oceanology, Marseille; Arago laboratory, Biological Oceanography Laboratory of Banyuls-sur-Mer; The Blue Coast Marine Park, Carry-le-Rouet; National Park of Port-Cros; Mediterranean station of the coastal environment, Sète).

In May 2016, I have been contracted as Research Assistant by Sylvaine Giakoumi on the PAVIS Project. During the 2 next years, my main role is is to help to the organisation of field missions and carry out the experimentation in 9 marine protected areas (MPAs) in 6 Mediterranean countries (Spain, France, Italy, Croatia, Greece and Turkey). PAVIS will investigate the following hypotheses:

1) whether MPAs influence the expansion of invasive species and mitigate their effects on native assemblages,
2) whether the ecological effects of such species could alter, reduce, or nullify ecosystem responses to protection in MPAs, and
3) whether local economic activities, such as artisanal fisheries and recreational diving, performed in MPAs and adjacent areas, have been impacted by the presence of invasives.

Previously, I joined the ECOMERS lab as a postdoctoral fellow in 2014. First, I joinedthe « Macrophytes Team » for 7 months to work mainly on the conservation and the ecological restoration of the large brown seaweeds forests, especially Cystoseira spp. in Mediterranean Sea (in France, Monaco and Montenegro). I worked on the study of heat pump discharges effects on shallow benthic littoral communities in Monaco, and on the study of the ecology of the benthic toxic dinoflagellate Ostreopsis cf. ovata. I was involved in 4 national and european projects: Optima PAC, MMPA, Coconet Project and M3HABs. Then, I joined the « Fish Team » at the beginning of 2015 for 6 months to work on the marine cave ecology (marine cave project) in the French Mediterranean Sea by assessing the fish assemblages in selected marine caves and the potential of the cardinalfish Apogon imberbis as a vector of trophic resources in the inner portions of caves.