Student Honors Research:

Amherst's Biology Department has a long tradition of active research by its faculty and participation of senior majors and other students in this research. Biology majors who enter the Honors Program devote about half of their academic effort during the senior year to research, and the resulting thesis is often the basis of their first scientific publication.

Class of 2015

Alsharif, Peter.  Does Rab3 maintain the active zone composition of extended larval synapses? Neuroscience. Advisor: Ethan Graf.

An, Juhyung K. Testing for a novel phospholipid translocase binding interaction: A haloperidol sensitivity screen.  Advisor: Patrick Williamson.

Cesinger, Monica.  Feeding the quorum: An examination of cell-to-cell communication and metabolism in Vibrio cholerae.  Advisor: Alexandra Purdy.

Cobrinik, Dora L.  Effects of SUV addition of phosphatidylethanolamine on membrane fusion in sea urchin cortical lawns. Advisor: Dominic Poccia.

DeSimone, Joely. Examining the effects of blowfly larvae (Protocalliphora sialia) on tree swallow (Tachycineta bicolor) nestling condition and possible host compensatory strategies. Advisor: Ethan Clotfelter. Winner of The Oscar E. Schotte Award.

Diehl, Frances.  Molecular signaling mechanisms of the sensor kinase CrbS in Vibrio cholerae.  Advisor: Alexandra Purdy.

Hollinger, Maile.  Molecular characterization of an rdea-fbxa- double mutant via quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Advisor: David Ratner.

Kim, John.  Logistic linear modeling of enhancer module even-skipped stripe 2 in early Drosophila melanogaster development.  Advisor: Michael Hood.

Leet, Donna.  Analysis of presenilin HOP-1 function in C. elegans gonad development. Advisor: Caroline Goutte.

Levy, Molly.  Plant competition or pollinator competition?: Mechanisms of selection in a hummingbird-pollinated system.  Advisor: Ethan Temeles.

Lobrano, Madeleine. Evidence of self-incompatibility in invasive Lycium ferocissimum: An exception to Baker's Rule. Advisor: Jill Miller.

Ordoobadi, Alexander. Hair cell encoding of intensity in the zebrafish lateral line.  Neuroscience. Advisor: Josef Trapani.

Pettie, Kade. Spatial organization of predicted transcription factor binding sites in Drosophia ChiP peaks.  Advisor: Patrick Williamson.

Ray, Charles T. Investigating the intersection between Protein Kinase A and the ubiquitin-mediated proteolysis pathway in Dictyostelium discoideum via the generation of a fbxA/pkaR double mutant strain. Advisor: David Ratner.

Rothman, Alissa.  The role of RIM domains on calcium channel accumulation at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction.  Neuroscience. Advisor: Ethan Graf.

Smith, Karen.  The elusive role of C. elegans APH-2 in notch-mediated germ-line production.  Advisor: Caroline Goutte. Winner of The Oscar E. Schotte Award.

Steinbrook, Eric A.  Host resistance and disease risk in the anther-smut system.  Advisor: Michael Hood.

Stoddart, Ashleigh E. Examining the signal transduction pathway for activation of camp-specific phosphodiesterase in Dictyostelium discoideum. BCBP. Advisor: David Ratner.

Sylla, Mariame.  Investigating the catabolite-mediated regulation of acetyl-CoA synthase and the acetate switch in Vibrio cholera.  Neuroscience. Advisor: Alexandra Purdy.

Troconis, Eileen. Intensity encoding in the zebrafish startle response evoked via optical stimulation of hair cells.  Advisor: Josef Trapani. Winner of The Oscar E. Schotte Award.

Ulloa, Gabriela. The structural role of lipids with negative intrinsic curvature in endoplasmic reticulum morphology. Advisor: Dominic Poccia.

Vrtilek, Julia. Comparing the effects of Hop-1 and Sel-2 presenilins on compromised notch signaling in C. elegans.  Advisor: Caroline Goutte.

Last Updated:
11 June 2015 TLR


McGuire Life Sciences Building