Freshman

Characterizing cell wall mutants in the model grass B. distachyon

Grasses represent some of the most agriculturally and economically important plant species around the world. Cereals are a cornerstone of food security, and several high biomass grasses are candidate biofuel crops. Understanding the genetic factors that regulate growth dynamics in grasses is key to bettering our ability to improve and implement these important crops species. In the Hazen lab, we study the transcriptional regulation of secondary cell wall biosynthesis in the model grass Brachypodium distachyon.

Lab Librarian

Our laboratory uses DNA sequences and morphological characters to investigate the diversity, evolution and ecology of armored scale insects (class Insecta: order Hemiptera: family Diaspididae), especially in tropical rainforests. We discover many undescribed species from around the world. The lab librarian is responsible for managing the lab's diverse array of interconnected information resources.

Armored scale insect systematics

Our laboratory uses DNA sequences and morphological characters to investigate the diversity, evolution and ecology of armored scale insects (class Insecta: order Hemiptera: family Diaspididae), especially in tropical rainforests. Paid lab assistantships are available for students to prepare DNA and microscope slide mounts from individual armored scale insect specimens. For advanced students, independent research projects are also possible.

Bird Nestling Videography Lab Technician - House Wren Project

I’m Aaron Grade (agradeeco.wordpress.com), a PhD student in Dr. Paige Warren’s lab. We are an urban ecology lab based in the Department of Environmental Conservation. I am seeking laboratory technicians in Fall 2017 for an avian urban ecology study. There is the potential to continue working for the project into the Spring semester as well. My study is focused on the effects of perceived predation risk on House Wren nesting biology on an urban-to-rural gradient. During our summer field seasons, we monitor House Wren nests in nest boxes on private homeowner lands.

Data Management Lab Technician - House Wren Project

I’m Aaron Grade, a PhD student in Dr. Paige Warren’s lab. We are an urban ecology lab based in the Department of Environmental Conservation. I am seeking laboratory technicians in Fall 2017 for an avian urban ecology study. There is the potential to continue working for the project into the Spring semester as well. My study is focused on the effects of perceived predation risk on House Wren nesting biology on an urban-to-rural gradient. During our summer field seasons, we monitor House Wren nests in nest boxes on private homeowner lands.

Mammal Camera Lab Technician - House Wren Project

I’m Aaron Grade (agradeeco.wordpress.com), a PhD student in Dr. Paige Warren’s lab. We are an urban ecology lab based in the Department of Environmental Conservation. I am seeking laboratory technicians in Fall 2017 for an avian urban ecology study. There is the potential to continue working for the project into the Spring semester as well. My study is focused on the effects of perceived predation risk on House Wren nesting biology on an urban-to-rural gradient. During our summer field seasons, we monitor House Wren nests in nest boxes on private homeowner lands.

Adventures in root growth

I am looking for a motivated undergraduate to help us with our experiments on the growth of plant roots. For the moment, tasks will be physiologically based, measuring elongation rate, root diameter, and some other parameters. Some methods will use basic light microscopy. Molecular experiments are likely, in the future. Some work managing plant growth and seed harvet to maintain our lines will also be involved. As the student gains experience in the lab, they will get to take on their own project. Previous lab work is not necessary.

Sex determination through programmed cell death in corn flowers

Male corn flowers undergo programmed cell death to selectively delete female sex organs. Although this process is critical to development and, in turn, to crop production, little is known about the genes controlling corn sex determination. Our lab has identified corn mutants that do not undergo programmed cell death in flowers. We are working towards understanding which genes have been disrupted in these mutants, and how they function in normal flower development. We are seeking a motivated undergraduate to assist with a project studying these genes.

The evolution of gene regulation in plants

Protein coding gene sequences differ very little between closely related species. Despite nearly identical proteins, the spatio-temporal use of protein-encoding genes, also called gene expression, is much more divergent, and likely explains differences between different species. We are seeking a motivated undergraduate to assist with a project studying gene expression in plants, and how evolution can conserve or innovate on expression patterns to explain the diversity we see in the plant kingdom.

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