Dr Patrick Cahill

Scientist - Marine Invasive Species and Anti-fouling Science

In the BiocideToolbox, Patrick is championing the development of select natural product antifouling biocides. The phytochemical polygodial and the algal biotoxin portimine have been shown to display potent antifouling activity, exceeding that of commercial antifouling biocides by several orders of magnitude. Studies to understand mechanisms of potency and develop commercially viable formulations based on these natural lead compounds are ongoing. This work utilises a suite of antifouling bioassays developed by Patrick, and Patrick welcomes opportunities to apply these assays in projects led by other researchers and industry partners.


Patrick is a Research Scientist at Cawthron Institute. His main research interests pertain to antifouling science and marine invasive species management. He currently leads projects to: design “eco-friendly” antifouling formulations based on natural compounds and novel surface characteristics; manage problematic biofouling in aquaculture; and develop reactive treatment tools to mitigate biosecurity risks associated with vessel biofouling.

Technical skills, experience and interests

  • Designing and evaluating “eco-friendly” antifouling technologies

  • Bioassay development and application

  • Marine chemical ecology, especially the innate antifouling defences of marine organisms 

  • Marine larval biology and ecology 

  • Marine biosecurity, particularly invasive sea squirt ecology


Patrick's profile