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Graduate Research Projects in Biology

Current Master's candidates (advisors in parentheses)

Scott Abla (DeWald)
Kendell Bennett (DeWald)
Daniel Brewer (Catley)
Elizabeth Bush (Hyman)
Sherri Deaton (Wilson)
Jeffrey Drummond (Pechmann)
Alyssa Fuller (Catley)
Jamie Harrelson (Hyman)
Jessica Krippel (Hyman)
Miranda Lapierre (Martin)
Elizabeth Martin (DeWald)
Jessica McDonald-Duke (Pechmann)
Ashley Montgomery (DeWald and Collins)
Carol Petricevic (Collins)
Katie Lewis (Adkison)
Mary Schultz (Costa)
Travis Seaborn (Catley)
Brian Southard (Catley)
David Russell (Wilson)
Usha Upreti (Collins)
Eli White (Pechman)
Rachael Woods (Martin)

Graduates and their thesis titles (advisor in parentheses)

2013
Beth Budden M.S. (Bose) Characterization of putative acetate kinase in the pathogenic yeast, Cryptococcus neoformans

Sarah Corkern M.S. (Catley) Factors affecting dispersal and web tenacity in the lampshade spider, Hypochilus pococki Platinick (Araneae: Hypochilidae)

Megan Eckhardt M.S. (Catley) Evidence of kin-specific communication in a temperate, subsocial spider Anelosimus studiosus (Araneae, Theridiidae)

Elizabeth Hillard M.S. (DeWald) Elk (Cervus elaphus L.) habitat selection in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Christopher Love M.S. (Pechmann) How conservative are sexual pheromones?: a cross-genera study of plethodontid salamanders

Rachel Myers M.S. (Hyman) Correlation between boldness and aggression of urban and rural song sparrows

April Punsalan M.S. (DeWald) The germination of Helonias bullata L. (swamp pink) in response to flooded, saturated, and dry conditions

Ryan Simmons M.S. (Bose)

Brandon Smith M.S. (Wilson) Low-level variant detection in human mitochondrial DNA using the Illumina MiSeq next generation sequencing platform

Daniel Sollenberger M.S. (Pechmann) Seasonal activity in dwarf waterdogs (Necturus punctatus): risk management or resource acquisition?

Sieberdina (Hilde) Stawski M.S. (Wilson) Preparing whole genome human mitochondrial DNA libraries for next generation sequencing using Illumina Nextera XT

2012
Kendall Fuller M.S. (O’Connell) Comparison of bacterial communities in living eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) rhizospheres versus presumably dead eastern hemlock rhizospheres

Chris Beyer M.S.(Seischab) Determination of cell viability of superoxide dismutase knockout Escherichia coli strains using oxidative stress assays

Groves Dixon M.S. (DeWald) Relationship between genetic diversity, clonal structure and sudden Aspen decline in Kaibab National Forest (Arizona)

Alex Edwards M.S. (Martin) A comparison of the external microbial assemblages between native southern strain and wild northern brook trout, Salvelinus fontinalis, of hatchery ancestry

Jessica Jaynes M.S. (Collins) A feasibility assessment of native ferns for phytoremediation of arsenic

Charles Lawson M.S. (Pechmann) Land use and eastern hellbender (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis alleganiensis) populations in three Hiwassee River tributary watersheds

Bridget Nelson M.S. (O’Connell) Increased fungal diversity associated with Aphaenogaster spp.:  more evidence for keystone mutualisms

Adric Olson M. S. (Martin) Life history traits of the mirror shiner, Notropis spectrunculus, in western North Carolina

Nicole Parrish M.S. (Collins) Habitat analysis of a disjunct population of the Carolina northern flying squirrel (Glaucomys sabrinus coloratus)

Kyle Pursel M.S. (Pechmann) The effects of rhododendron on salamander communities in the Nantahala Mountains

Jennifer Torgeson M.S. (DeWald) genetic variation in Hydrastis canadensis populations in western North Carolina

John Tupy M.S. (Pechmann) Terrestrial habitat selection by the dusky gopher frog (Rana sevosa)

2011
Kyle Boudreau M.S. (Hyman) Correlates of aggression: the interplay between boldness, testosterone, and territoriality in male song sparrows, Melospiz melodia, in urban and rural habitats

Jenny Browder M.S. (Adkison) The effect of Celastrus orbiculatus, oriental bittersweet, on the herbaceous layer along a western North Carolina creek

Jason Jarvis (Miller) Water quality in the upper Little Tennessee river and its potential effects on the Appalachian Elktoe Mussel (Alasmidonta raveneliana)

Jackson Evans (Hyman) An examination of the influence of social information on territory selection by a partially migratory population of song sparrows (Melospiza melodia)

Natasha Shipman M.S. (DeWald) Role of color and odor on the attraction of insect visitors to spring blooming trillium. 

2010
Meredith Carroll M.S. (Hyman) The different use of an urban and rural habitat by wintering and resident song sparrows (Melospiza melodia)

Stephanie Grant M.S. (DeWald) Microsatellite Genetic Diversity of Northern Red Oak (Quercus rubra) in Western North Carolina Pre- and Post-Chestnut Blight and Pre- and Post-Harvest

Keith Hoffman M.S. (DeWald) Patterns of Recruitment and Young Culm Morphology in Arundinaria gigantea ([Walt.] Muhl.) Canebrakes in Western North Carolina

Donald Patterson M.S. (Coburn) Optimization of a PS2.M-based catalytic beacon in preparation for use as a device to explore mRNA secondary structures

Jennifer Patterson M.S. (Seischab) Assessment of the effects of superoxide-generating agents on the growth and viability of Escherichia coli using traditional microbiological methods and fluorescence methods

Christina Stoehrel M.S. (Mathews) A study of the systematic relationships between members of the Trillium erectum complex

2009
Carter Dillow M.S. (O’Connell) Diversity patterns of 16S rDNA of bacteria and amoA of archaea and bacteria from Eastern Hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) rhizosphere soil

Louise Burley M.S. (Costa) An analysis of the spacial distribution of egg masses in natural populations of the eastern tent caterpillar Malacosoma americanum (Lepidoptera : Lasiocampidae)

Jeremy Craft M.S. (Pechmann) Effects of an invasive earthworm on Plethodontid salamanders in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Alan Curtis M.S. (Bose) Creating Deletion Strains to Study the Role of the Argonaute and Dicer Genes in RNA Interference in Cryptococcus neoformans

Josephine Falcone M.S. (DeWald) Comparisons of arthropod and avian communities in insecticide-treated and untreated hemlock stands in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Sheree Ferrell M.S. (Martin) A comparison of macroinvertebrate and meiofauna biomonitoring metrics for streams potentially affected by the Upper Tellico OHV area, Nantahala National Forest, NC

Max Lanning M.S. (Mathews) A systematic study of the flowering plant genus Micranthes (Saxifragaceae) in the Southern Appalachians

Nicholas Martinez M.S. (Coburn) Studies toward in vitro reconstitution of plant chromatin

Amanda Schoonover M.S. (Seischab) Development of bacterial oxidative stress assays: towards using fluorescence methods

2008
Sheila Cladis M.S. (DeWald) Interactions of resin flow, sap flow and environmental variables in two pine species (Pinus strobus and Pinus echinata; Pinaceae)

Dawn Cusick M.S. (Costa) Reproductive dynamics in the cryptic Amblycorypha katydids of the southern Appalachians

Jennifer Extine M.S. (DeWald) Evaluation of habitat patch characteristics in western North Carolina golf courses

Adam Griffith M.S. (Mathews) Chemical and physical characterization of rivercane (Arundinaria gigantea (Walt.) Muhl.) soils in western North Carolina

Carly Lett M.S. (DeWald) Effects of mycorrhizal fungi and phosphorus on the growth of Celastrus orbiculatus

Christina Manee M.S. (Adkison) The effect of roads on the distribution of Microstegium vimineum

Stacie Poston M.S. (Seischab) CD44-mediated binding and internalization of high and low molecular weight hyaluronic acid in malignant mesothelioma cells

Emily York M.S. (O’Connell) Characterization of bacterial assemblages from the rhizosphere of eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) using culturing methods and molecular cloning

2007
Nathan Irwin M.S. (Martin) The short-term effects of stream restoration on fish species composition and microhabitat use near in-stream structures in western North Carolina

Michael LaVoie M.S. 2007. (Martin) Spatial and temporal patterns of drifting fish larvae in the upper Pigeon River, Haywood County, North Carolina

2006
Melissa Collins M.S. 2006. (O'Connell) Molecular diversity of bacteria from three diverse ecosystems within Great Smoky Mountain National Park

Philip Drummod M.S. 2006. (O'Connell) Diversity of Archaea from three forested ecosystems in Great Smoky Mountains National Park g

Barclay Taylor M.S. 2006. (O'Connell) Seasonal and individual differences in the bacterial microflora from wild elk in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

2005
Wes Cornelison M.S. 2005. (Martin) An ecological comparison between two strains of wild brook trout, Salvelinus fontinalis

Mark Hall M.S. 2005. (Adkison) Classification and gradient analysis of plant communities at Short Mountain Wildlife Management Area, Hampshire County, West Virginia

Weaver Haney M.S. 2005. (O’Connell) Microbial ecology of a chromium contaminated Super Fund site

Darby Harris M.S. 2005. (Rundle) The identification and characterization of a novel protein that interacts with the catalytic subunit of Arabidopsis thaliana protein phosphatase 2A

Mike Ivey. M.S. 2005. (Mathews) A taxonomic reassessment of Thermopsis mollis and T. fraxinifolia

Mia Martens M.S. 2005. (Costa) A preliminary phylogeographic study of the Diplurid genus Microhexura.

Sara Martin M.S. 2005. (Adkison) Modeling the plant communities of Long Branch Environmental Education Center

Jeff Wesner M.S. 2005. (Martin) Growth and mortality under low pH of two strains of brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis)

2004
Lucas Conkle M.S. 2004. (Costa, Young) Using multiple data sources to understand the formation and the natural history of heath balds in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Jacqulyn Greenfield M.S. 2004. (Pittillo) Breaking physiological and epicotyl dormancy in Allium tricoccum Ait. Seed

Daniel Hanks M.S. 2004. (Martin) An investigation of benthic fish movement

Matias Jasin M.S. 2004. (Costa) Arsenura armida : characterization of cuticular lipids and search for trail pheromones (Lepidoptera: saturniidae: arsenurinae)

Maureen Kavanagh M.S. 2004. (Martin) A comparison of fish passage through highway culverts

Susan Robert M.S. 2004 (Costa )Effects of larval group size on thermoregulation, group foraging, and defense in the eastern tent caterpillar, Malacosoma americanum (Lepidoptera: Lasiocampidae)

Ben Salter M.S. 2004. (Martin) Isotopic fingerprinting of lead arsenate contamination in freshwater snails of the Richland Creek basin, Haywood County, North Carolina

2003

Henry Angelopulos M.S. 2003. (O'Connell) Effects of Anakeesta leachate on microbial assemblages of a southern Appalachian stream

Matt Dunn M.S. 2003. (O'Connell) Experimental evolution: Saccharomyces cerevisiae in two resource environments

Christophe Le Moine M.S. 2003 (Galbreath) Reduction of non-specific signal in the immunodetection of Hsp70 in heat-shocked erythrocytes of rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)

Mike Swaim M.S. 2003 (Galbreath) An inventory of the order Ephemeroptera in Panthertown Valley, Jackson County, North Carolina

Erika Yates M.S. 2003 (Martin) Observations on the Odonata of a stream bog complex in Pantertown Valley, North Carolina

2002
Katrina Ferrell M.A. Ed. (Perlmutter)

Dawn Geverd M.S. (Mainwaring) The effects of pH on decomposition rates of leaf litter by aquatic fungi.

Sunny Himes M.S. (Wyatt) The Costs and benefits of self-fertility in poke milkweed, Asclepias exaltata

Alan Kirsch M.S. (Costa) Genetic Structure and Gene Flow in the Red-headed Pine Sawfly, Neodiprion leconti (Fitch) [Hymenoptera: Diprionidae]

Shannon Kondrad M.S. (Miller, Geosciences) Use of lead isotopes to assess sources and mobility of contaminants from Barber's Orchard, Haywood County, North Carolina

Shannon Mallison M.S. (Miller, Geosciences) Assessment of variations in heavy metal accumulation in Quercus alba: a dendrochemical-lead isotopic approach

Lorraine Maloof M.S. (Lumb) Correlation between growth at elevated temperature and heat shock gene expression in trout

Jonathan Mays M.S. (Costa) A systematic approach to sampling the arthropod fauna in Gregory's Cave, Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Lisa Mazzarelli M.S. (Tinker, Geosciences) The effects of land use legacies on ground nesting migratory forest birds.

Nga Pace M.A. Ed. (Perlmutter).

Robert Warren M.S. (Pittillo) The Encroachment of Woody Vegetation in a Southern Appalachian Wetland

2001
Robbie Flowers (Costa) Group Foraging dynamics and intra-specific communication of the red-headed Pine Sawfly, Neodiprion lecontei (Fitch) (Hymenoptera: Diprionidae)

Nathan Taylor (Bruce) The Herpetofauna of Panthertown Valley, North Carolina, with emphasis on the efficacy of coverboards in evaluating populations of terrestrial salamanders

Jeremy Sanders (Coyle) A structured inventory of the spider assemblage of an old-growth hemlock community in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and a test of species richness estimator performance

Xin Sheng M.S. 2001 (Rundle) Identification of Arabidopsis thaliana TAP46 domains necessary for interaction with protein phosphatase 2A catalytic subunit and protein phosphatase 4.

Chip Singletary (Coyle) A structured inventory of stoneflies (Plecoptera) in Panthertown Valley, Jackson County, North Carolina

Jonathan White (Rundle) The effects of heat shock and age on translation effects of the alternately spliced AtB' a 5'UTR of Arabidopsis thaliana

2000
Matthew L. Rhea (West) Movement of brown, rainbow, and brook trout within Shining Creek, Shining Rock Wilderness

V. Laura Spell (Costa) Nymphal Odonate assemblages in selected streams and a southern Appalachian bog in Panthertown Valley, Jackson County, North Carolina

Steve A. Tipton (Mainwaring) Comparison of embryological development rates in diploid and triploid rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)

Stephanie Waters-Stocks (Costa) Distribution and Life History Analysis of Fattigiaa pele (Ross) [Trichoptera: Sericostomatidae] with Natural History Observations

Cynthia C. Gill White (Bruce) An analysis of spatial utilization by the terrestrial salamander Plethodon metcalfi

Emily C. Axt Whiteley (Coyle) A structured inventory of the spiders in a southern Appalachian bog

1999
Grace E.W. Bockoven (West) Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) restoration in the southern Appalachians

Deborah Stewart Cochran (Rundle) Altered expression of type 2A protein phosphatase regulatory B' subunit isoforms in transgenic Arabidopsis [i.e. Arabidopsis thaliana]

Aaron R. Cooper (Pittillo) Classification and description of old-growth hemlock communities in the Cataloochee watershed of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Kevin J. Hining (West) An assessment of annuli counts from scales and otolith for aging rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) in the southern Appalachians

Larissa G. Knebel (Pittillo) Changes in old growth hemlock forests of the Cataloochee watershed in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park: preparing for the arrival of the hemlock woolly adelgid (Adelges tsugae)

Robert W. Louque (Costa) Foraging behavior of the red-headed pine sawfly, Neodiprion lecontei (Fitch) (Hymenoptera: Diprionidae)

James A. MacKenzie, Jr (Lumb) Characterization of DHA-induced apoptosis in HL-60 cells

Paige McGuire Sibley (Lumb) Influence of DHA on terminal differentiation of human promyelocytic leukemia (HL-60) cells

Ian C. Stocks (Coyle) Systematics and natural history of Barronopsis (Araneae, Agelenidae)

1998
William R. Edwards (Coyle) A comparison of the effectiveness of three sampling methods for surveying ground spider diversity in an old growth hemlock community

Juliet G. H. Haynes (Rundle) Studies of in vivo and in vitro subunit interactions of Arabidopsis thaliana protein phosphatase type 2A

Peter W. Julius (Pittillo) Avian community composition and density of ten forest types within the southeastern Blue Ridge Escarpment

Chittam U. Thakore (Rundle) High divergence between the promoter regions of the 55kDa B subunit isoforms of Arabidopsis protein phosphatase type 2A

1997
Angela Kirsten Burcham (Mainwaring) Effect of nuclear DNA amounts on the rate of growth, nuclear distribution, and hyphal size in Allomyces arbuscula

Chad L. Hallyburton (West) Fatlips minnows (Cyprinidae: Phenacobius crassilabrum): phenology, reproduction, food habits, shoaling behaviors, and microhabitat use

Patricia G. Livingston (Bruce) A morphometric study of larvae of four species of hemidactyliine salamanders (Caudata: Plethodontidae)

Charles J. Moore (West) Genetic origin of brook trout, Salvelinus fontinalis, in selected streams of the Pigeon River watershed

John S. Owen (Lumb) Temperature dependence of the deacylation of ether-linked phosphatidylcholine in leukocytes of the rainbow trout

Robin T. Stamey (Rundle) Molecular characterization of a novel isoform of the catalytic subunit of protein phosphatase type 2A in Arabidopsis thaliana

Linda G. Trunk (Lumb) Heat shock and apoptosis in rainbow trout leukocytes

1996
Minghua Chen (Wallace) Flavonoids of select species of the Hymenophyllaceae (filmy ferns) and their potential chemotaxonomical value

Phillip B. Corbin (Lumb) Effect of stress on rainbow trout platelet-activating factor acetylhydrolase

John W. Corum, III (Rundle) Molecular characterization of a novel isoform of the B regulatory subunit of protein phosphatase type 2A in Arabidopsis thaliana

Floyd A. Cribbs, IV (West) Emergence times, diet, size, and condition factor of postemergent brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) in Rough Butt Creek, a southern Appalachian stream in Jackson County, N.C.

Andrew J.P. Hartung (Rundle) Characterization of recombinant Arabidopsis thaliana protein phosphatase type 2A

Neil D. Hetrick (West) Descriptions and phylogeny of four limnephiloid caddisflies (Trichoptera) based on first instar larvae

Jeremy A. Miller (Coyle) Systematics of the erigonine spider genus Sisicottus (Araneae, Linyphidae)

Steven D. Roberts (Pittillo) Classification and description of old-growth communities within the Kelsey Natural Area

Douglas S. Toti (Coyle) Species richness and the taxonomic and guild composition of the spider communities of a grass bald and heath bald in the Great Smoky Mountains

Charles E. Zartman (Pittillo) Inventory and ecological analysis of spray cliff plant communities in the Chattooga Basin

 

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