Brief profiles of recent and ongoing research by Amherst College’s faculty and students in Biology. Please see the News Archives for older entries. 

Trapani Lab: Enlargement of ribbons in zebrafish hair cells increases calcium currents, but disrupts afferent spontaneous activity and timing of stimulus onset"

June 2017. The Journal of Neuroscience. Cover Article!

Lavinia Sheets, Xinyi J. He, Jennifer Olt, Mary Schreck, Ronald S. Petralia, Ya-Xian Wang, Qiuxiang Zhang, Alisha Beirl, Teresa Nicolson, Walter Marcotti, Josef G. Trapani and Katie S. Kindt

Temeles Lab: Resource partitioning by color in a tropical hummingbird

Ethan J. Temeles, Alexandra R. Mazzotta, & April Williamson

2017 Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 71: 129

We present the first example of partitioning of artificial nectar sources by color in hummingbirds and argue that such partitioning may result from differences between tropical and temperate plant communities in divergence (tropical) and convergence (temperate) in floral coloration.

Fungal Model to Shed New Light on Human DNA

The National Institutes of Health has awarded Professor Michael Hood a $444,651 grant to investigate the problem of chromosome degeneration. (Read more)

In Disease Research, Plants Pack Surprising Punch

When it comes to gaining new understandings of how diseases like Zika and Ebola spread, the key may lie with a tiny pink flower the size of a quarter. (Read more) 

Jeong Lab: Directing iron transport in dicots: regulation of iron acquisition and translocation

Jeeyon Jeong, Aleks Merkovich ‘17, Madeline Clyne ’18 & Erin L. Connnolly

Current Opinion in Plant Biology 39: 106-113. Oct. 2017

Highlights

Plants are the main source of dietary iron, yet iron uptake by plants is limited.
Iron acquisition and translocation are subject to fine-tuned homeostatic control.
New insight on molecular details of iron uptake and translocation has been revealed.