Students and experiments

BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES GRADUATE PROGRAM

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Since entering the Biological Sciences Graduate Program, our students have conducted significant research, attended and presented at national conferences, and have received awards to honor their accomplishments. Below is a summery of our current students' activities and successes during their time at here Marquette University.


 

ANDERSON LAB

Yan Li

RESEARCH INTEREST

I’m studying the functions of Mtr4p as a component of TRAMP complex in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Mtr4 plays an important role in nuclear RNA processing and turnover, that is dependent on ATP hydrolysis.

Yan Li
Enrolled Fall 2009
Biological Sciences 
B.S., Agricultural University of Hebei
Fengchao Wang

RESEARCH INTEREST

TRAMP is a three subunit complex involving RNA processing, surveillance and and degradation. My research interest is to characterize the TRAMP complex in mice by integrating data from RNA-Seq and other methods.

Fengchao Wang
Enrolled Fall 2011
Biological Sciences 
B.S., Qufu Normal University
Alexis Onderak

RESEARCH INTEREST

My research focuses on the role of the mammalian TRAMP complex in RNA surveillance. Specifically, I am working to characterize RNAs that are processed by the TRAMP complex to promote their degradation in mouse cells. 

Alexis Onderak
Enrolled Fall 2012
Biological Sciences 
B.S. Marquette University

 

ABBOTT LAB

Adele Gordon

RESEARCH INTEREST

Pacemaker activity, whether in the defecation motor program in C. elegans or the beating of the human heart, involves the rhythmic release of calcium. My research focuses on identifying the mechanism through which the microRNA, miR786, acts on target proteins, such as elo-2, to establish and maintain pacemaker activity in the posterior intestine of C. elegans.

Adele Gordon
Enrolled Fall 2012
Biological Sciences 
B.S. Marquette University
Carmela Rios

RESEARCH INTEREST

I am working on the role of microRNAs in ovulation.  We are identifying what events of ovulation require microRNAs, microRNAs, and what specific microRNAs function to regulate ovulation.  

 

Carmela Rios
Enrolled Fall 2012
Biological Sciences 
B.S. Purdue University

 

 

DOWNS LAB

Deepa Valsangkar

RESEARCH INTEREST

The overall goal of my research is to investigate the AMPK (AMP-activated Protein Kinase)-mediated regulation of fatty acid oxidation in the regulation of mouse oocyte maturation. This research has potential applications in the assessment of metabolic status of oocytes for in vitro maturation and fertilization as well in the study of possible reproductive repercussions of drugs that modulate fatty acid metabolism such as some potential anti-obesity drug candidates.

CONFERENCES

2010 Society for the Study of Reproduction annual meeting, Milwaukee, WI.

2011 Society for the Study of Reproduction annual meeting, Portland, OR.

2012 Society for the Study of Reproduction annual meeting, State College, PA

HONORS AND AWARDS

2013 Richard W. Jobling Travel Award, Marquette University

 

Deepa Valsangkar
Enrolled Fall 2009
Biological Sciences

B.Sc.,University of Pune

M.Sc., Goa University

 

 

FITTS LAB

Cassie Nelson

RESEARCH INTEREST

My work involves exploring the cross bridge mechanisms of skeletal muscle fatigue and determining protective effects of exercise training. I have recently shown that H+ significantly decreases peak force (Po) at submaximal levels of calcium at physiological temperatures using the skinned fiber preparation.  Studies will be performed to discover the exact step(s) of action of H+, Pi, and ADP in the cross bridge cycle and whether or not these factors work synergistically. 


PUBLICATIONS

Edwards, J.M., Neeb, Z.P., Alloosh, M.A., Long, X., Bratz, I.N., Peller, C.R.,  Byrd, J.P., Kumar, S., Obukhov, A.G., and Sturek M.l.  (2010) Exercise training decreases store-operated Ca2+ entry associated with metabolic syndrome and coronary atherosclerosis. Cardiovascular Research.  Feb 1; 85(3) 631-640.


CONFERENCES

2010 American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Annual Meeting, Baltimore, MD

2012 American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Annual Meeting, San Fransisco, CA

2013 Experimental Biology, Boston, MA

HONORS AND AWARDS

2012 Richard W. Jobling Travel Award, Marquette University

2013 Dr. Catherine Grotelueschen Scholarship, Marquette University

2013 Schmitt Fellowship, Marquette University

2013 Richard W. Jobling Travel Award, Marquette University

Cassie Nelson
Enrolled Fall 2009
Biological Sciences

B.S., Marquette University

M.S., Indiana University School of Medicine

 

 

HRISTOVA LAB

Michael Mashock

RESEARCH INTEREST

My research involves the potential toxicity of Zinc Oxide nanoparticles on the ecosystem.  The model system used is the symbiosis of Phaseolus vulgaris (the common bean) and Rhizobium etli, a bacteria which induces the formation of nodules which fix N2 for the plant.  Our objectives are to determine the potential effects with Nanoparticles at environmentally relevant concentrations and to observe the potential effects on the symbiosis of the two organisms.

CONFERENCES

2012 Sustainable Nanotechnology Conference, Arlington, VA.

Michael Mashock
Enrolled Fall 2010
Biological Sciences
B.S., Winona State University

 

 

MAKI LAB

Prince Mathai

RESEARCH INTEREST

Short-chain fatty acids (SCFA) such as propionate and butyrate are crucial intermediates formed during the breakdown of complex organic matter to methane and carbon dioxide. The objective of my study is to characterize the abundance and population dynamics of syntrophic acetogens involved in the breakdown of SCFA into acetate during anaerobic digestion.

CONFERENCES

2013 General Meeting-Annual Society for Microbiology, Denver, CO

HONORS AND AWARDS

2013 Marquette University Fellowship

2013 Richard W. Jobling Travel Award, Marquette University

2013 Charles O'Hara Scholarship, Marquette University

Prince Mathai
Enrolled Fall 2009
Biological Sciences
B.Tech Biotechnology; Allahabad Agricultural Institute

 

 

MYNLIEFF LAB

Andrew Karls

RESEARCH INTEREST

The work I do in Dr. Mynlieff's lab centers on how activated GABAB receptors modulate voltage-dependent calcium channels during neonatal mammalian development. I employ several techniques in my studies, such as electrophysiolgy, immunoblotting, and ratiometric calcium imaging. This work has implications in common human diseases, such as epilepsy. Beyond my research, I have a strong interest in teaching methodology.

CONFERENCES

2009 39th Annual Meeting of Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL


2010 40th Annual Meeting of Society for Neuroscience, San Diego, CA


2011 41st Annual Meeting of Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC


2012 Biophysical Society 56th Annual Meeting, San Diego, CA

2012 Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA

HONORS AND AWARDS

2011 Marquette University Fellowship
2012 Marquette University Fellowship
2011 Richard W. Jobling Award, Marquette University
2012 Dr. Catherine Grotelueschen Scholarship, Marquette University

Andrew Karls
Enrolled Fall 2008
Biological Sciences
B.S., University of Wisconsin Green Bay

 

 

NOEL LAB

Tiezheng Li

RESEARCH INTEREST

The O-antigen portion of the lipopolysaccharide (LPS) plays many important roles in different gram negative bacteria. For example, it is crucial for rhizobia-plant symbiosis. My research focuses on understanding the biosynthesis of the O-antigen in Rhizobium etli CE3, specifically, characterizing the enzymes involved in the initial step of synthesis.

HONORS AND AWARDS

2011 Marquette University Fellowship

2013 Marquette University Fellowship

CONFERENCES

2010 The 21st North American Symbiotic Nitrogen Fixation Conference, University of Missouri, Missouri

Tiezheng Li
Enrolled Fall 2009
Biological Sciences
B.S., South China Agricultural University
Zac Lunak

RESEARCH INTEREST

I study the respiratory pathway in Rhizobium etli.  I am particularly researching the regulation and utilization of quinol oxidase during the different phases of symbiosis between Rhizobium etli and Phaseolus vulgaris (common bean).

HONORS AND AWARDS

2013 Marquette University Fellowship

Zac Lunak
Enrolled Spring 2011
Biological Sciences
B.S., University of North Dakota

 

PETRELLA LAB

Meghan Fealey

RESEARCH INTEREST

I am determining how temperature affects chromatin state and therefore gene regulation using C. elegans as a model. I am observing the role that synMuv B proteins have in determining chromatin states by utilizing synMuv B mutants.  

Meghan Costello
Enrolled Fall 2012
Biological Sciences 
B.S., Purdue University

 

ST. MAURICE LAB

Adam Lietzan

RESEARCH INTEREST

My research focuses on understanding the molecular basis for catalysis and allosteric regulation in the multifunctional biotin-dependent enzyme pyruvate carboxylase.

HONORS AND AWARDS

2012 Denis J. O'Brien Fellowship, Marquette University

2012 Schmitt Fellowship, Marquette University

2012 American Crystallographic Association Travel Grant

2012 Oliver Smith Achievement Award, Marquette University

CONFERENCES

2012 American Crystallographic Association Annual Meeting, Boston, MA

2012 26th Annual Symposium of the Protein Society, San Diego, CA

2013 23rd Enzyme Mechanisms Conference, Coronado, CA

 

Adam Lietzan
Enrolled Fall 2008
Biological Sciences
B.A., Western Maryland College
Yi Lin

RESEARCH INTEREST

Research into the catalysis mechanism of biotin-dependent enzymes.  Determine the structure and function of urea amidolyase.

HONORS AND AWARDS

2012 Richard W. Jobling Award, Marquette University

2013 Marquette University Fellowship

2013 Oliver Smith Achievement Award, Marquette University

PUBLICATIONS

Lin Y., St. Maurice M. (2013) The Structure of Allophanate Hydrolase from Granulibacter bethesdensis Provides Insights into Substrate Specificity in the Amidase Signature Family. Biochemistry, Jan 29; 52(4):690-700

CONFERENCES

2012 27th Annual Symposium of the Protein Society, San Diego, CA

2013  The 23rd Enzyme Mechanisms Conference, San Diego, CA. Presented: Structural and functional studies of urea amidolyase.

 

Yi Lin
Enrolled Fall 2009
Biological Sciences
B.S., Jiangnan University

 

SCHLAPPI LAB

Yao Shi

RESEARCH INTEREST

Our aim is to better understand the biochemical and genetic mechanism of cold tolerance in Rice. My research will be identifying putative candidate genes near to some novel cold tolerance QTLs that are involved in cold temperature response.

Yao Shi
Enrolled Fall 2012
Biological Sciences 
B.S., M.S., Xi'an Northwest University

 

STUART LAB

Josh Garlich

RESEARCH INTEREST


I’m interested in the molecular regulation of cellular metabolism. My current work is focused on understanding how the cellular microenvironment influences changes within the cell, and the underlying molecular mechanisms.

HONORS AND AWARDS

2013 Charles O'Hara Scholarship, Marquette University


PUBLICATIONS


Strogolova V., Furness A., Robb-McGrath M., Garlich J., and Stuart R.A. (2012) Rcf1 and Rcf2, members of the hypoxia induced gene 1 protein family, are critical components of the mitochondrial cytochrome bc1-cytochrome c oxidase supercomplex. Mol Cell Biol. Feb 6

 

Josh Garlich
Enrolled Fall 2010
Biological Sciences
B.A., Bethany College
Vera Strogolova

RESEARCH INTEREST

I am interested in molecular mechanisms regulating cellular metabolism. My current work focuses on the regulation of mitochondrial respiration and how this reflects the metabolic needs of the cell.

PUBLICATIONS

Strogolova V., Furness A., Robb-McGrath M., Garlich J., and Stuart R.A. (2012) Rcf1 and Rcf2, members of the hypoxia induced gene 1 protein family, are critical components of the mitochondrial cytochrome bc1-cytochrome c oxidase supercomplex. Mol Cell Biol. Feb 6

CONFERENCES

2011 Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Conference, Steamboat Springs, CO

Vera Strogolova
Enrolled Spring 2012
Biological Sciences
B.S., M.S., UW-Milwaukee

 

 

YANG LAB

Yi Liu

RESEARCH INTEREST

Protein phosphorylation is one of the most fundamental and important post-translational modifications. Yet the precise roles of phosphorylation in eukaryotic flagella remain largely unknown. My research investigates investigates phosphorylation in the radial spoke complex that regulates dynein-driven flagellar beating.

Yi Liu
Enrolled Fall 2011 
Biological Sciences
B.S., Wuhan University
Xiaoyan Zhu

RESEARCH INTEREST

The 9+2 axoneme is the microtubule-based scaffold in eukaryotic cilia and flagella. I use green alga Chlamydomonas as a model organism to elucidate the key steps in the assembly of the radial spoke complex in the axoneme.

PUBLICATIONS

Zhu, X., Liu, Y., Sivadas, P., Gupta, A., and Yang, P. 2013. Molecular tools for studying the radial spoke. Methods Enzymol. 524: 19-36.

Xiaoyan Zhu
Enrolled Fall 2011
Biological Sciences 
B.S., Shandong Normal University

 

First Year Graduate Students

Brittney Wyatt

To help in determining the best fit of student and mentor, first-year students do three laboratory rotations. During the rotations, students are temporary members of the laboratories whose research appears to be of greatest interest to them. Before the end of the student's second semester, an advisor who guides both research and selection of coursework is chosen by mutual agreement between faculty and student.

Britt Wyatt
Enrolled Fall 2013
Biological Sciences 
B.S., Colorado State University -Fort Collins
Yumeng Liu

To help in determining the best fit of student and mentor, first-year students do three laboratory rotations. During the rotations, students are temporary members of the laboratories whose research appears to be of greatest interest to them. Before the end of the student's second semester, an advisor who guides both research and selection of coursework is chosen by mutual agreement between faculty and student.

Yumeng Liu
Enrolled Fall 2013
Biological Sciences 
M.S., Agricultural University-Hebei
Sean Conway

To help in determining the best fit of student and mentor, first-year students do three laboratory rotations. During the rotations, students are temporary members of the laboratories whose research appears to be of greatest interest to them. Before the end of the student's second semester, an advisor who guides both research and selection of coursework is chosen by mutual agreement between faculty and student.

Sean Conway
Enrolled Fall 2013
Biological Sciences 
B.S., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Josh Hakala

To help in determining the best fit of student and mentor, first-year students do three laboratory rotations. During the rotations, students are temporary members of the laboratories whose research appears to be of greatest interest to them. Before the end of the student's second semester, an advisor who guides both research and selection of coursework is chosen by mutual agreement between faculty and student.

Josh Hakala
Enrolled Fall 2013
Biological Sciences 
B.S., University of Wisconsin-La Crosse
Xinrui Wang

To help in determining the best fit of student and mentor, first-year students do three laboratory rotations. During the rotations, students are temporary members of the laboratories whose research appears to be of greatest interest to them. Before the end of the student's second semester, an advisor who guides both research and selection of coursework is chosen by mutual agreement between faculty and student.

Xinrui Wang
Enrolled Fall 2013
Biological Sciences 
B.A., China Pharmaccutical University

 



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