Lexi with Darwin

Alexandria C. Brown

Ph.D. Candidate

Clotfelter Lab, Merrill Science Building, Rm 223
Phone: 413-542-8327
E-mail: acbro0@cns.umass.edu

Professional and Biographical Information

Degrees

Ph.D., University of Massachusetts Amherst (2013)
B.A., Mount Holyoke College (2006)

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Research Interests

My research interests lie at the intersection of immunology, biochemistry, and evolution.  I am particularly interested in the evolutionary underpinnings of disease.  I am also interested in how natural physiology can inform engineering (biomimicry).
 
Currently, my research takes place in Dr. Ethan Clotfelter's physiology and animal behavior lab at Amherst College.  Soon I'll be starting a postdoc position with Dr. Steve Farber at the Carnegie Institute in Baltimore, MD.  Goodbye, Clotfelter Lab, I'll miss you!

 

Publications

Brown AC, Cahn MD, Choi S, and Clotfelter ED. In prep. Pro-oxidant ß-carotene supports immunity in a pigmented fish. For submission to J. Exp. Biol.

Brown AC, Leonard HM, McGraw KJ, Clotfelter ED. In review. Maternal effects of carotenoid supplementation in an ornamented cichlid fish (Amatitlania nigrofasciata).  Funct. Ecol.

Brown AC, Stevenson LM, Leonard HM, Nieves-Puigdoller K, and Clotfelter ED.  In review  Short-term phytoestrogen exposure modifies behavior in the Siamese fighting fish Betta splendens.

Montgomery TM, Brown AC, Gendelman HK, Ota M. and Clotfelter ED. In press. Exposure to 17α-ethinyl estradiol decreases motility and ATP in sperm of male fighting fish Betta splendens. Environ. Toxicol.

Brown AC, McGraw KJ, Clotfelter ED. 2013. Dietary carotenoids increase yellow nonpigment coloration of female convict cichlids (Amantitlania nigrofasciata). Physiol. Biochem. Zool. 86:312-322.

Clotfelter ED, Lapidus SJH, Brown AC. 2013. The effects of temperature and dissolved oxygen on antioxidant defences and oxidative damage in the fathead minnow Pimephales promelas. J. Fish. Biol. 82:1086-1092

Brown AC, Clotfelter ED.2012. Fighting fish (Betta splendens) bubble nests do not inhibit microbial growth. J. Exp. Zool.A.317:481487 (Cover story) JEZ cover

Stevenson LM*, Brown AC*, Montgomery TM, Clotfelter EC. 2011. Reproductive consequences of exposure to waterborne phytoestrogens in male fighting fish Betta splendens. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 60: 501-510.

Lin SM, Nieves-Puigdoller K, Brown AC, Clotfelter ED. 2010. Testing the carotenoid trade-off hypothesis in the polychromatic Midas cichlid, Amphilophus citrinellus. Physiol. Biochem. Zool. 82:333-322.

Kuperberg ES, Brown AC, and Clotfelter ED. 2009. Body condition in maleBetta splendens does not predict their ability to perform opercular displays under hypoxic conditions. Ethology 115: 1182-1189.

Blakeslee C, McRobert SP, Brown AC, Clotfelter EC. 2009. The effect of body coloration and group size on social partner preferences in female fighting fish (Betta splendens). Behav. Process. 80:157-161.

*Authors contributed equally to this work.

 

Papers presented

Brown AC, McGraw KJ, Clotfelter ED. Dietary carotenoids increase non-carotenoid coloration of female convict cichlids (Amantitlania nigrofasciata)Annual Meeting for the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, San Francisco, CA, 3-7 January 2013.
 
Brown AC, McGraw KJ, Clotfelter ED. Carotenoid coloration of female convict cichlids and implications for sexual signalingInternational Congress on the Biology of Fish, Madison, WI, 15-19 July 2012.Clotfelter ED,
 
Brown AC, Montgomery TM. Reproductive consequences of exposure to waterborne phytoestrogens and ethinyl estradiol in male fighting fish Betta splendensAnnual Meeting for the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, Salt Lake City, UT, 3-7 January 2011.
 
Brown AC, McGraw KJ, Clotfelter ED. Carotenoid allocation strategies in a reverse sexually-dimorphic species – Animal Behavior Society Meeting, Williamsburg, VA, 25-29 July 2010.
 
Brown AC, Clotfelter ED. Fighting fish (Betta splendens) bubble nests promote microbial growth – Animal Behavior Society Meeting, Bloomington, IN, 25-30 July 2011.
 
Lin, S.M., Nieves-Puigdoller, K., Brown, A.C., McGraw, K.J. and Clotfelter, E.D. Coloration-immune trade-offs in the dichromatic Midas cichlid. International Behavioral Ecology Congress, Ithaca, NY, 9-15 August 2008.

 

Recent Projects

Winter 2012-13: My DDIG funding allowed me to take 3 students from the Clotfelter Lab to Costa Rica to study convict cichlids in their natural habitat.  What a great experience to share with some great undergraduates!
Wild, non-breeding convicts schooling together to dine on some delicious algae.
I show Sara how to use the GPS tracker, so we don't get lost!
A lovely couple of wild convict cichlids ready to defend their nest and offspring against some very suspicious-looking apes with cameras.
Danny swims to shore with a convict cichlid he caught!

 

Links

Older Projects

The Clotfelter Lab

OEB Student Outreach