FSU Biology - Current Grad Students
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Biological Science - Graduate Studies

Florida State University

        

Grad Student
Kristen Abreu
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Feng

Grad Student
Sara Akram
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Bass

Grad Student
Fatima Alcantara
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr.Underwood

Grad Student
Penelope Ales
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Nora Underwood

Grad Student
Alicia Allen
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr.Winn

Grad Student
Carlie Anderson
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Lemmon
I study the proximate mechanisms of speciation in North American chorus frogs. I'm broadly interested in the neural and genomic basis for population-level differences in mating traits that drive macroevolutionary processes. 
Grad Student
Laura Anthony
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Brooke
I am interested in the ecophysiology of habitat-forming deep-sea corals. My dissertation research focuses on the environmental drivers that affect the reproductive biology of several reef-forming deep-sea corals around the globe.
Grad Student
Sona Antonyan
Neuroscience

Grad Student
Lorea Arambarri
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Dennis

Grad Student
Erica Atkins
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Burgess

Grad Student
Danielle Barnes
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Burgess

Grad Student
Marena Bass
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Dr. Houpt

Grad Student
Donavan Baughman
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr.Shantz

Grad Student
Curissa Beatty
Neuroscience

Grad Student
Shahin Behrouz Sharif
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Tracey Bell
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Lenhert

Grad Student
Jane Benoit
Cell and Molecular Biology
My overarching interest is in the innate and adaptive immune responses to viral pathogens on a molecular level. Host cell-pathogen interactions result in changes in chromatin remodeling and architecture in addition to changes in gene expression and other responses. Understanding the molecular processes behind changes in chromatin states on the nucleosomal level is of great importance to molecular biology and immunology.
Grad Student
Amber Bernstein
Neuroscience

Grad Student
Rachael Best
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Levitan

Grad Student
Katherine Bilodeau
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Rachel Biton
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Breithaupt/Miller

Grad Student
Allie Blanchette
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Rassweiler
I am interested in studying how species interactions and human activities play into the resilience of marine ecosystems. There's also a special place in my heart for farmer damselfish.
Grad Student
Annais Bonilla-Johnson
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr.Grubbs

Grad Student
Cecilia Bouaichi
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Vincis

Grad Student
Randi Bowman
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: McCoy
I am broadly interested in studying how biodiversity affects ecosystem functioning in coral reef ecosystems. My dissertation research focuses on identifying and predicting spatial and temporal shifts in coral functional diversity in response to anthropogenic stressors, and determining which aspects of functional diversity are key to maintaining high levels of ecosystem functioning in the face of regular disturbance regimes. (Pronouns: she/her/hers)
Grad Student
Emilie Broussard
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Rokyta

Grad Student
Christopher Carroll
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dennis

Grad Student
Lauren Carson
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Javed Chitaman
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Dr. Feng

Grad Student
Jason Cote
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Dr. Houpt

Grad Student
Ishwaree Datta
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Bangi

Grad Student
Danielle Davis
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Miller

Grad Student
Ashley Dawdy
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Grubbs
I am primarily interested in the behavioral ecology of elasmobranchs, particularly in dynamic systems. My past research used active and passive acoustic telemetry to investigate movement and habitat use patterns in coastal sharks. I am currently investigating social and mating behavior in the critically endangered smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata). This work contributes to the delineation of essential fish habitat and informs the building of successful species conservation plans.
Grad Student
Jessica Dehn
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Grubbs

Grad Student
Grayson DeLong
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Tom Houpt

Grad Student
Jacob Dilliplane
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Dr.J. Fadool

Grad Student
Abigail Dittmar
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Nora Underwood
I use a combination of mathematical models and field-based experiments to study mechanisms of plant resistance to insect herbivory. I am especially interested in how individual-level interactions scale up to affect the spatial structures of populations and communities and how spatiotemporal variability can shape population and community dynamics. My research lies at the intersection of basic and applied science and I work in both natural and agricultural systems. 
Grad Student
Alexandra Dubel
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Rassweiler

Grad Student
Mysia Dye
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Lemmon

Grad Student
Francis Ebuara
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Schyler Ellsworth
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Rokyta

Grad Student
Laurel Field
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Lester
Laurel’s research focuses on the implementation, tracking, management, and socio-ecological aspects of area-based marine conservation tools. She is also interested in the development of sustainable marine food systems and the compatibility of marine conservation and mariculture goals in ocean spaces.
Grad Student
Leslie Fillmore
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr.Winn

Grad Student
Gabrielle Fisher
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Jones

Grad Student
Emily Fuqua
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Brooke
My research interests are based in applied ecophysiology. I am interested in how anthropogenic changes to the environment, such as increasing ocean temperature and increasing anoxic zones, affect an organism’s physiology, and in turn, how physiological changes affect ecology and population dynamics. My PhD research will focus on Eastern oyster health in the Apalachicola Bay system, and my goal is to assist fisheries managers and conservationists in restoring and preserving a healthy oyster population in Apalachicola Bay. 
Grad Student
Yashika Garg
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Stroupe

Grad Student
Destinee Gatlin
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Fadool

Grad Student
Yacob Gebreab
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Alexa Guerrera
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Hughes
I am interested in social behavior and how interactions among conspecifics can drive evolutionary processes. Currently, I am studying the effects of male-male competition and female preference on the maintenance of genetic diversity in Trinidadian guppies. Pronouns: she/her/hers
Grad Student
Gabrielle Harris
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr.Winn

Grad Student
Morgan Hawkins
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr.Brooke

Grad Student
Michael Hogan
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Rokyta

Grad Student
Rubel Hoq
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Dennis

Grad Student
Joseph Horacek
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Ingels

Grad Student
Tyler Hunt
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Erickson

Grad Student
Benton Jaco
Ecology & Evolution

Grad Student
Nicholas Johnson
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Steppan

Grad Student
Luke Jones
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Houle
In the Houle lab, I use experimental evolution/artificial selection and whole-genome resequencing, to research parallel genetic evolution between evolved populations of D. melanogaster and D. simulans. These two closely related species offer the ability to evaluate the predictability of genetic evolution in response to an identical selection pressure.
Grad Student
Anuvind Kalpetta Gramathil
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Graham Kaplan
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Dr. Feng

Grad Student
Sarah Kettelkamp
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Travis
I am interested in evolutionary genetics, specifically in the context of sexual conflict. My dissertation is focused on understanding the genetics of female resistance to male harm in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. Pronouns: she/her
Grad Student
Mahdi Khadem
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dennis

Grad Student
Kathryn Koirtyohann
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Kylie Lawrence
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Rokyta

Grad Student
Ashley Loeven
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Debi Fadool
My research interests lie in understanding intracellular signaling that mediates dietary fat-induced inflammation and irreversible loss of olfactory sensory neurons in mouse models.
Grad Student
Calvin Mackey
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Jones

Grad Student
Faezeh Maleki
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Joshua Manning
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. McCoy
I am broadly interested in community ecology and the effects of anthropogenic stressors on organismal physiology and ecology. To date, my research has focused on ecological interactions of organisms on coral reefs and the effects of ocean acidification on algal ecology and physiology. My current PhD dissertation research focuses on the role of parrotfish behavior in driving spatial variation in benthic community structure and bioerosion on the fringing coral reefs of Bonaire, Netherlands.
Grad Student
Mariela Marques
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Dr.Vincis

Grad Student
Mardeliz Marty
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr.Burgess

Grad Student
Sean McCollum
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: McCoy

Grad Student
Angelica Medina
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Tang

Grad Student
Melanie Medina
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Levitan
I'm interested in reproduction and mate choice of simulataneous hermaphrodites and how this reproductive strategy is a potential mechanism for the maintenance of variation in marine gastropods such as sea slugs.
Grad Student
Anna Daniela Metzler
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Scott Miller
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Rassweiler

Grad Student
Brian Moe
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Cotton

Grad Student
Patience Moseley
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Fadool

Grad Student
Maya Munstermann
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Okamoto
My research currently focuses on the effects of climate change, such as increasing sea surface temperatures and marine heat waves, on a key marine herbivore, the purple sea urchin (Stongylocentrotus purpuratus) in California kelp forest ecosystems. More specifically, I focus on responses to thermal stressors during both larval and adult life history stages, which can provide important information on the population dynamics of this species, and ultimately the dynamics of kelp forests.
Grad Student
Isanze Nudalo
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr.Winn

Grad Student
Gunnar Nystrom
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Rokyta

Grad Student
Ryan Ochoa
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Dr. D. Fadool

Grad Student
Jared Osland
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Steppan

Grad Student
Monica Paniagua Montoya
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Underwood
I am interested in how differences among conspecific individuals impact interactions, population dynamics and community level processes. In particular, I am interested in the tritrophic interactions of plants, herbivores, and enemies of herbivores.
Grad Student
Fritz Pichardo
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Mast

Grad Student
Benjamin Pluer
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Travis
I am broadly interested in better understanding the evolution and ecology of microbial symbionts in the digestive system of fish. In particular, I'm interested in identifying the role of digestive system microbial symbionts in alleviating the nutrient loading stress in local freshwater systems, using metagenomic and metaproteomic analysis of key microbial species, to determine contribution to adaptation.
Grad Student
Jackson Powell
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Burgess
My research focuses on the potential for evolutionary rescue in marine invertebrates with complex life cycles. I take a quantitative genetics approach to estimate additive genetic variance in, and genetic correlations between, traits in larval and adult life stages. To estimate these variances and correlations, I conduct breeding designs and environmental manipulations using Molgula occidentalis and Bugula neritina, two invertebrates found in nearby shallow subtidal waters.
Grad Student
Meizhu Qi
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Debra Fadool

Grad Student
Maria Quintero Rodriquez
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Bangi

Grad Student
Hosna Rastegarpouyani
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: FYAC

Grad Student
Bryce Redfern
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Colton Remedies
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Feng

Grad Student
Bobbie Renfro
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Wulff
I am generally interested in conducting research, teaching, and public outreach related to tropical marine ecology and anthropogenic disturbance. Specifically, my dissertation research explores the effects of nutrient enrichment on Caribbean reef sponges.
Grad Student
Aaron Ridall
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Ingels
I am broadly interested in understanding how anthropogenic pollution is affecting marine environments. I am particularly interested in how the presence of microplastics changes ecosystem function in subtidal sediments. My current research focuses on quantifying the effects of microplastics on bioturbation and biochemistry, specifically oxygen availability and nitrogen cycling, in the subtidal sediments of the northeastern Gulf of Mexico.
Grad Student
Pearl Rivers
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. DuVal
My dissertation research investigates the causes and consequences of variability in mate choice in a tropical lekking passerine bird. By examining variation within and between mate choice bouts in relation to neglected signaling modes and across long temporal scales, I hope to better understand the axes of variation in mate choice and their effects on the evolutionary outcomes of sexual selection.
Grad Student
Miles Robertson
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr.Cortez
I am interested in the mechanisms that drive epidemics. I use mathematical models and computer simulations to analyze such disease systems.
Grad Student
Noel Robinson
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Trexler

Grad Student
Sayantan Roy
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Yin

Grad Student
Sarah Ruckman
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Hughes

Grad Student
Sadia Sayed
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Chadwick

Grad Student
Shania Schull
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Wulff
Interactions between organisms that share space are complex; this is especially true for coral reefs which boast unparallel biodiversity and whose benthic communities are composed of many taxa. Among these taxa, coral reef sponges and stony corals have unique and critical ecosystem functions; while the corals create reef structure and substrate, the sponges promote water clarity and act as a glue holding the reef together. Relationships between sessile reef organisms are often considered competitive, but a closer look tells us that mutualisms and commensalisms also exist between corals and sponges and may be more common than previously expected. By closely examining the point of contact between corals and sponges in addition to their overall growth and health one can interpret how these important functional groups work together to create some of the most biodiverse ecosystems in the Caribbean. Following many pairings of corals and sponge species through time has revealed that coral-sponge interactions can be temporally dynamic and, in some cases, inter- and intra-specifically variable. Consideration for the metrics used to classify interactions as competitive, mutualistic, and commensal and attention to the unique behaviors of coral and sponge species may call for incorporation of multiple taxa (corals and reef sponges) in efficient restoration and conservation efforts in the Caribbean.
Grad Student
Matthew Schumm
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Okamoto
My interests include population dynamics, distributions and evolution of (mostly marine and aquatic) organisms, along with development of new quantitative modeling approaches. A current focus of research is eco-evolutionary impacts of harvest on populations.
Grad Student
Morgan Shakeshaft
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Vincis

Grad Student
Yun Shi
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. P. Bryant Chase
My research mainly focuses on Ca2+-dependent thin filament regulation of contraction and cooperative interactions among myofilament proteins in striated muscle, including both skeletal muscle and cardiac muscle. As the Ca2+ sensor of the thin filament, troponin is the major protein that I am particularly interested in. For the projects I am currently involved in, experimental, statistical and computational methods are combined to reveal the characteristics of this protein in both physiological and pathological process, e.g., cardiomyopathy.
Grad Student
Samantha Skrob-Martin
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr.Travis

Grad Student
Grace Soltis
Ecology & Evolution

Grad Student
Sixian Song
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Fadool

Grad Student
Nathan Spindel
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Okamoto
My goal is to advance our understanding of how trophic dynamics and environmental change affect the metabolic ecology of size-structured populations. I currently study marine invertebrates in temperate kelp forest and tropical coral reef ecosystems as model organisms for understanding these dynamics.
Grad Student
Selma Squafi
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Trexler

Grad Student
Divyaa Srinivasan
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Fraser

Grad Student
Natalie Storch
Neuroscience

Grad Student
Kathleen Torrence
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Steppan

Grad Student
Jesse Turner
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Gilbert
I am interested in the 3D organization of chromatin within the nucleus and how that relates to other nuclear functions, such as transcription and DNA replication. My current project in the lab is investigating early replication control elements (ERCEs), a discrete class of cis-regulatory elements that act as "enhancers of early replication," but also have roles in maintaining sub-nuclear compartmentalization, transcription, and TAD structure. (he/him/his)
Grad Student
Zachary Turpin
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Bass

Grad Student
Manisha Tyagi
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Paola Urlich
Cell and Molecular Biology

Grad Student
Athanasios Vouzas
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Gilbert

Grad Student
Nick Waddell
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Feng

Grad Student
Nidhi Walia
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Stroupe

Grad Student
Barry Walton
Ecology & Evolution

Grad Student
Miao Wang
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Zhu

Grad Student
Matthew Ward-Moses
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Lyons

Grad Student
Austin Werner
Neuroscience
Major Prof: Dr. J. Fadool

Grad Student
Grace Westphal
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Stewart Merrill/Okamoto

Grad Student
Niall Whalen
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Erickson

Grad Student
Courtney Whitcher
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr. Lemmon
I am broadly interested in the evolution of visual and auditory signals in anuran communication and sexual selection. My current project focuses on examining the role of biofluorescence in mate choice and predation of frogs.
Grad Student
Michael Wintermantel
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: Dr.Brooke

Grad Student
Brandon Witmer
Ecology & Evolution
Major Prof: McCoy

Grad Student
Rui Yang
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Yin

Grad Student
Chris Zelinka
Neuroscience

Grad Student
Yijing Zhao
Cell and Molecular Biology
Major Prof: Dr. Tang
I am interested in studying the impact of Zika virus on cell cycle progression.