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Global Patterns of Urban Biodiversity and Socioeconomic Inequality

In some cities, plant and animal diversity is closely tied to the wealth of city residents (more money means more diverse ferns and flowers, for example). But this is not the case in every city. Evan Kuras (graduate student) seeks an undergraduate research assistant to aid in a analysis of biodiversity and socioeconomic that will help us better understand these patterns at a global scale. The student will help compile, manage, and analyze city-level information related to such patterns.

Control of Programmed Cell Death During Development and Pathogenesis

Our lab discovered a new gene that encodes a novel survival protein, Acheron/LARP6, that protects terminally differentiated cells like muscles and neurons from cell death. It is also misregulated in certain cancers and functions to both protect cells from toxic insults like chemotherapy and enhance metastasis. We have found an isoform of this gene that encodes only a small portion of the protein that we believe will antagonize the action of the normal protein.

Avian Vocal Behavior: Pine Warblers

Birds of many species in the wood-warbler family use their songs in especially interesting ways. For example, their songs fall into two categories, and the two kinds of songs are used in different contexts, vary over time and space in different ways, and have different functions in communication. However, although many species in the family share this two-tiered singing system, species differ in the sizes of their song repertoires, how the difference between the two categories is encoded, how song form varies within a population, how songs change over time, and so on.

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.

3D house project

The Irschick lab at UMASS Amherst is looking for a committed undergraduate to work on 3D houses with a team of other faculty. The student will work with pre-existing photos to use photogrammetry to create 3D houses, and will also likely use new photo gear to take new photos of various endangered houses in MA. Please send a CV, a 200-word statement on why you want to join lab, and contact info for a reference to Duncan Irschick at irschick@bio.umass.edu

3D sea turtle digital project

The Digital Life project (see www.digitallife3d.org) is seeking a committed undergraduate who will work 6-8 hours/week creating 3D sea turtles through the process of photogrammetry. The student will work with prior photos to create 3D models, as well as work with the team to develop new 3D models. Student must be willing to do hours of photo organizing work and to learn new photo software. Students should send a CV, a 200 word statement on why they want to join the lab, and contact info on a reference.

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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