Photos by Prof. Karen Chan, Dr. Cynthia Yau, Ms. Esther Wong.

Last updated on Mar 4, 2019

To Chan Lab

Kit Yu Karen CHAN

Office: Martin 123

Lab: Martin 125 

Email: kchan1"at"


2012  PhD in Oceanography, University of Washington. 

2009  MSc in Oceanography, University of Washington.

2006  BSc (Hons) in Environmental Life Science, University of Hong Kong. 


Current appointment

Assistant Professor

Biology Department

Swarthmore College

Adjunct Assistant Professor 

Division of Life Science 

Hong Kong University of Science and Technology 

Previous Academic Positions (2006- beyond)

2014-2018                         Assistant Professor, Division of Life Science, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

2016                                  Visiting Fellow, South African Institute of Aquatic Biodiversity, South Africa

2013-2015                         Guest Investigator, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, MA. 

2012-2013                         Postdoctoral Scholar of the Coastal Ocean Institute and Croucher Foundation Fellow, WHOI, MA.

Summer 2011 & 2013      Visiting Scientist, Sven Lovén Center of Marine Sciences and Research, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

2006-2012                         Research Assistant for Dr. Daniel Grünbaum, Univ. of Washington


Research Grants

2018-2019       COTS Research Grant, Australian Museum Lizard Island Research Station, PI (AUD$25, 472)

Swimming behaviors of larval Crown-of-Thorns-Seastars: implications for distribution and dispersal modeling

2017-2020       Research Grant Council, General Research Fund

From physiology to predictions in a changing world: an application of dynamic energy budget model to bivalve veligers

2016-2018       Environmental Conservation Grant

Marine invertebrate larvae in Hong Kong waters: Development of sampling and photo identification guides for larval decapods and stomatopods

2016-2020       Research Grant Council, Early Career Scheme

Effect of warming, acidification & hyposalinity on marine invertebrates larvae

2015-2017       Environmental Conservation Grant, Co-PI

Assessing the marine biodiversity and ecology of Tolo Harbour and Channel, with particular reference to coastal marine environments of Ting Kok and Shuen Wan Hoi – phase I

2014-2017       National Science Foundation, Biological Oceanography

Functional Diversity and Performance of Ciliated Marine Invertebrate Larvae: Measuring and Modeling Larval Swimming, Feeding and Hydrodynamic Signaling

2014-2016       Smithsonian Institution Competitive Grant Program for Science, co-PI

Effects of hypoxia on planktonic larval distribution in tropical Caribbean

2014-2016       ASSEMBLE On-Site Assess Call, co-PI

Impact of ocean acidification on egg and sperm physiology

2012-2013       Royal Swedish Academy of Science 

Project: Impacts of changing ocean conditions on planktonic larval stage of marine invertebrates


Selected Publications (^ indicates students)

^Mak, K. K.Y. and Chan, K.Y.K. 2018. Interactive effects of warming and hyposalinity stress on early life stages of the sea

urchin Heliocidaris crassispnia. Mar. Biol.165:57

^Leung, J. and Chan, K.Y.K. 2018. Microplastics reduce posterior regeneration rate of the polycheate Perinereis aibuhitensis. Mar. Poll. Bull.


^Lo, H. K. and Chan, K.Y.K. 2017. Negative and concentration-dependent effects of microplastic exposure on growth and development

of Crepidula onyx amid selective feeding. Env. Poll. 233:588

^Maboloc, E.A. and Chan, K.Y.K. 2017. Resilience of the larval slipper limpet Crepidula onyx to direct and indirect-diet effects of ocean

acidification. Sci. Rep. 7:12062

^Pecquet, A., Dorey, N. and Chan, K.Y.K. 2017. Ocean acidification impact swimming and development of Bugula neritina. Mar. Poll. Bull.


^Zhang, SW., Chan, K.Y.K., Shen. Z., Cheung, S.Y., Landry, M.R. and Liu, H.B. 2017. Feeding behavior of a cryptic marine ciliate on progametes

of Noctiluca scintillansProtist.

Collin, R. and Chan, K.Y.K. 2016. Negligible safety factors for early development of the sea urchin Lytechinus variegatus in a tropical

lagoon. Ecol. Evol. 6: 5623–5634.

+Wheeler, J.D, +Chan, K.Y.K. (co-first authors), Anderson, E., Mullineux, L. 2016. Ontogenetic changes in larval swimming and orientation of pre-

competent sea urchin Arbacia punctulata in turbulence. J. Exp. Biol. Inside JEB Featured Article. 219:1303-1310

Chan, K.Y.K., Gracis, E., Dupont, S.T. 2015. Swimming of urchin larvae unaffected by acidification-induced developmental delay. Scientific Reports.


Chan, K.Y.K., Grünbaum, D., Arnsberg, M., Dupont, S.T. 2015.  Impacts of ocean acidification on survival, growth, and swimming behaviors

differ between larval urchins and brittlestars. ICES Journal of Marine Science. (Invited contribution), doi: 10.1093/icesjms/fsv073

Chan, K.Y.K., Jiang, H.S., Padillia, D.K.. 2013. Swimming speed of larval snail does not correlated with size and ciliary beat frequency. PLoS-

One. 8:e82764

Chan, K.Y.K., Grünbaum, D., Arnsberg, M., Thorndyke, M., Dupont, S.T. 2013. Ocean acidification induces budding in larval sea urchins. Marine

Biology. 160:2129-2135

Durkin, C. A., Bender, S.J., Chan, K.Y.K., Gaessner, K., Grünbaum, D, Armbrust, V. 2013. Silicic acid supplied to coastal diatom communities

influences cellular silicification and the potential export of carbon. Limnology and Oceanography. 58:1707-1726

Chan, K.Y.K. 2012. Biomechanics of larval morphology affect swimming: insights from the sand dollars Dendraster eccentrics. Integrative and

Comparative Biology. 52:458-469

Chan, K.Y.K., Yang, S., Maliska, M.E., Grünbaum, D. 2012. Interdisciplinary, guided inquiry on estuarine transport using a computer model in high

school classrooms. American Biology Teachers. 74:26-33

Chan, K.Y.K., Grünbaum, D., O Donnell, M.J. 2011. Effects of ocean acidification-induced morphological changes on larval swimming and feeding.

Journal of Experimental Biology. 214:3857-3867

Chan, K.Y.K., Grünbaum, D. 2010. Temperature and diet modified swimming behaviors of larval sand dollar. Marine Ecology Progress Series.



Selected Awards

2012-2014        Croucher Foundation Fellowship for Post-doctoral Research

2012                 Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Postdoctoral Scholarship

2011-2012        University of Washington College of Environment Travel Fund

2011-2012        Boeing International Fellowship

2010-2011        Huckabay Teaching Fellowship

2009-2010        Clarence H. Campbell Endowed Lauren Donaldson Scholarship

2008-2009        Stephen and Ruth Wainwright Endowed Fellowship

2006-2009        Sir Edward Youde Memorial Fellowship for Overseas Studies

PDF version of CV available here