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Climate Change, Evolution, and Invasive Species: How One University of South Florida Biologist is Collaborating to Discover the Connection [7/20/18]Throughout history, the earth’s climate has naturally gone through numerous changes, driven by changes in the amount of solar energy the earth receives. However, scientists now overwhelmingly agree that Earth is experiencing a substantial warming trend as a result of human activity. Temperature increases significantly impact weather patterns and the environment. From shrinking ice sheets and sea level rise to ocean acidification, the earth is being affected at rates scientists haven’t seen in millennia.
CAS professor receives Jerome Krivanek Distinguished Teacher Award[05.20.2016]The USF Faculty Senate Honors and Awards Council has selected Jason Rohr, Ph.D., to receive the 2016 Jerome Krivanek Distinguished Teacher Award.
Biology professor awarded Fulbright grant[04.19.2016]Assistant Professor Christina Richards of the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of South Florida received a 2016-2017 Fulbright U.S. grant to research and teach at the University of Rennes 1 in France.
Chantale Bégin receives a 2015 Outstanding Undergraduate Teacher Award at USF[11.20.2015]USF Instructor, Chantale Bégin, Ph.D. was awarded the 2015 Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award from the University of South Florida.
Biology student receives Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship [06.04.2015]Islam Ibrahim of the University of South Florida College of Arts and Sciences has been awarded a Gilman Scholarship to study abroad in Italy during the summer 2015 semester. The Gilman Scholarship will support Ibrahim’s future plans by offering him the opportunity to embark on an academic adventure through the USF Science in Florence Program, where he will develop his language and cross-cultural communication skills.
CAS student receives an honorable mention from the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship[04.06.2015]Stephanie Radu of the University of South Florida College of Arts and Sciences received an honorable mention for her application to the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, the most prestigious undergraduate award for science research. Applicants must write a rigorous research proposal as part of their application. The award can be used for educational expenses including research support.
CAS student receives Udall Scholarship[04.06.2015]Steffanie Munguia of the University of South Florida has been awarded a Udall Foundation Scholarship for 2015, one of only 50 students to receive this award in the United States. The award is given for a commitment to the environment and awardees receive a $5,000 scholarship to support research related to the environment. Munguia also becomes a member of a national, professional network of scientists, activists, educators, lawyers and others working on environmental issues. This network of change agents will support Munguia's goals of generating change in our understanding of and response to environmental challenges.
CAS student receives Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship[04.06.2015]Kirsti Martinez of the University of South Florida College of Arts and Sciences was awarded the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, the most prestigious undergraduate award for science research. Martinez is one of only 260 undergraduate sophomores and juniors in the United States to receive the $7,500 scholarship in the 2015-2016 academic year. Applicants must write a rigorous research proposal as part of their application. The award can be used for educational expenses including research support. Additionally, Martinez is USF’s first Goldwater recipient in another region – she was nominated and won in Wisconsin, her home state.
Integrative biology professor co-authors book[02.27.2015]University of South Florida Integrative Biology Professor Lynn (Marty) Martin co-authored and edited a new book titled “Integrative Organismal Biology.”
Botany professor writes book on plant life[02.18.2015]USF Emeritus Associate Professor Fredrick Essig wrote and published a book on plant life titled “Plant Life, A Brief History.” The book, published by Oxford University Press, is available in the U.S. and will be available in the U.K. in April 2015.
CAS professor, students publish research in Nature journal[07.10.2014]Emerging fungal pathogens pose a greater threat to biodiversity than any other parasitic group, causing population declines of amphibians, bats, corals, bees and snakes. New research from the University of South Florida published in the prestigious journal Nature reveals that amphibians can acquire behavioral or immunological resistance to a deadly chytrid fungus implicated in global amphibian population declines.
CAS professor named division chair of the Society of Integrative and Comparative Biology[07.09.2014]Associate Professor Lynn Martin of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of South Florida was named the new chair of the division of ecoimmunology and disease ecology of the Society of Integrative and Comparative Biology.
CAS professor to teach in Argentina as Fulbright Specialist[07.09.2014]Associate Professor Lynn Martin of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of South Florida will be teaching a series of lectures, workshops and classes at the Universidad Nacional Del Litoral in Santa Fe as a Fulbright Specialist.
USF graduate student receives research fellowship[06.15.2014]Drinkable water in Tampa Bay and surrounding areas has become scarce. Recently, conservation efforts led to using reclaimed water for irrigation purposes and a University of South Florida graduate student received a McKnight Doctoral Fellowship to research its effects.
Integrative biology professors co-publish book[06.10.2014]Two integrative biology professors from the College of Arts and Sciences have co-published a comprehensive book on North American tortoises.
CAS student received Barry Goldwater Scholarship[06.09.2014]An Honors College and College of Arts and Sciences student was awarded a 2014 Barry Goldwater scholarship.
CAS graduate students awarded second Unruh Book Scholarship[04.22.2014]Two integrative biology graduate students were awarded their second Unruh Book Scholarships from the Fern Garden Club of Odessa, Florida.
CAS professor awarded Fulbright Fellowship[4.20.2014]Valerie J. Harwood, an integrative biology professor from the College of Arts and Sciences, has been awarded a Fulbright fellowship to help develop DNA microarray for water testing in Australia.
CAS student receives prestigious Hollings Scholarship[04.03.2014]A University of South Florida College of Arts and Sciences student was named a Hollings Scholar by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for 2013-15.
CAS student awarded competitive Udall Scholarship[04.03.2014]A University of South Florida College of Arts and Sciences student is one of 50 students to receive a Udall Foundation Scholarship, a $5,000 scholarship to support research related to the environment.
CAS student awarded Aylesworth Scholarship for second time[03.20.2014]The odds of being awarded a scholarship are often against applicants. Christy Foust, a doctoral student at the University of South Florida College of Arts and Sciences, is a remarkable exception.
CAS professor publishes book on ecological patterns[01.21.2014]A professor in the Department of Integrative Biology has published a book on ecological patterns.
Professor chosen for research program in South Africa[01.21.2014]A professor at the University of South Florida Department of Integrative Biology was appointed as a research fellow at Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study in South Africa.
3 CAS professors named AAAS Fellows[01.20.2014]Three College of Arts and Sciences faculty members at the University of South Florida in Tampa were named Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in 2013. Election as an AAAS Fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers. In total, USF had six faculty members awarded this distinction in 2013.
USF to host NYT Best-Selling Author of "Proof of Heaven"[12.03.2013]By telling the story of his near-death experience, Dr. Eben Alexander III’s book, “Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife” became a New York Times best-seller. The controversial claims have led him to being interviewed by the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Katie Couric, and Larry King.
USF researchers show invasive sparrows immune cells sharpen as they spread[11.20.2013]When invasive species move into new areas, they often lose their natural enemies, including the microbes that make them sick. But new research from evolutionary biologists at the University of South Florida has found that adjustments in the immune system may help house sparrows, one of the world’s most common bird species, thrive in new areas.
New USF professor receives WIDER grant[10.18.2013]New University of South Florida researcher Luanna Prevost recently received a National Science Foundation Widening Implementation & Demonstration of Evidence-Based Reforms (WIDER) grant for $55,000 to study how linguistic software can be used to help faculty assess and improve student learning in biology courses.
IB professor receives NSF grant, invitation to speak in India[10.16.2013]University of South Florida researcher Kathleen Scott has received a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Division of Integrative Organismal Systems, together with Peter Girguis from Harvard University. USF was awarded $320,000 from the grant.
Associate professor at USF to attend NASA/NSF workshop[11.15.2013]Associate professor Lynn (Marty) Martin from the Department of Integrative Biology has been invited to participate in a National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)/National Science Foundation (NSF)workshop on acute and chronic stress Dec. 5-6 in Arlington, Va.
USF professor develops way to solve pollution problem at local beach[10.25.2013]High levels of pollution hit the shores of Ben T. Davis Beach earlier this year and University of South Florida Professor Valerie (Jody) Harwood from the Department of Integrative Biology was asked to solve the problem. Thanks to microbial source tracking, which Harwood helped develop, she was able to find the source of pollution: a submerged, broken sewer pipe.
Early-life exposure to herbicide increases frog mortality from fungal disease[10.23.2013]The combination of the herbicide atrazine and a fungal disease is particularly deadly to frogs, shows new research from a University of South Florida laboratory, which has been investigating the global demise of amphibian populations.
Professor co-authors paper on freshwater contamination[08.01.2013]A University of South Florida College of Arts and Sciences professor recently co-authored a paper comparing the use of human viruses and bacteriophages as markers of sewage waste contamination of freshwater.
Professor awarded NSF grant to study disease resistance[08.01.2013]Two University of South Florida professors were awarded a four-year, $600,000 National Science Foundation research grant to study the effects of stress hormones on disease resistance, tolerance and transmission.
CAS professor appointed to National Research Council Committee[07.23.2013]A University of South Florida professor has been appointed to the National Academy of Sciences’ National Research Council Committee on Coastal Risk Reduction.
Students study reef ecology in Curacao[07.17.2013]This past May, the University of South Florida Department of Integrative Biology took a step toward teaching students in a more experiential way. Eight students from the Coral Reef Ecology course opted for a 1-credit field course, which gave them the opportunity to travel to Curacao at the end of the spring semester to perform hands-on research.
Caribbean coral brings USF students to Curacao[07.02.2013]This past May, the University of South Florida Department of Integrative Biology took a step toward teaching students in a more experiential way. Eight students from the Coral Reef Ecology course opted for a 1-credit field course, which gave them the opportunity to travel to Curacao at the end of the spring semester to perform hands-on research.
IB faculty and student publish in Integrative Zoology[06.07.2013]University of South Florida IB faculty Jason Rohr and graduate student Jeremy Cohen and Yiming Li from China, wrote a review and synthesized the literature on the topic of responses of amphibians to climate change, emphasizing acutely lethal, sublethal, indirect and positive effects of climate change on amphibians and major research gaps on the subject.
IB student receives prestigious award[05.20.2013]University of South Florida IB student Amber Ferguson was awarded the Guy Harvey Student Scholarship Award. This scholarship is a competitive fellowship of which there were 52 applicants. Ferguson is studying strike and bite force of king mackerel as well as the functional morphology of their feeding. She is a master’s student in the lab of Philip Motta in the Department of Integrative Biology.
IB faculty publish in ecology journal[05.13.2013]IB faculty member Lynn (Marty) Martin and 21 co-authors published "Do Invasive Species Perform Better In Their New Ranges?" A fundamental assumption in invasion biology is that most invasive species exhibit enhanced performance in their introduced range relative to their home ranges. This idea has given rise to numerous hypotheses explaining ‘‘invasion success’’ by virtue of altered ecological and evolutionary pressures.
CAS members review the effects of climate change on amphibians[06.18.2013]With amphibians in a state of decline, many have suspected climate change has played a direct role. However, in a paper published in the journal Integrative Zoology, University of South Florida researchers argued that such studies are generally sparse and limited in research.
IB faculty publish in prestigious journal[06.17.2013]The University of South Florida’s Integrative Biology faculty members Earl McCoy and Henry Mushinsky co-authored a study on habitat selection of the Florida gopher tortoise with Katherine Basiotis from the Wildlife Habitat and Kevin Connor from H. W. Lochner, Inc.
IB faculty publish work in Biology Letters[06.10.2013]Matthew Venesky and Jason Rohr from the University of South Florida’s Department of Integrative Biology co-authored a paper along with several researchers from the University of Memphis on a study about changes in intestinal length in southern leopard frog tadpoles in response to infection with the fungus pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis.
CAS faculty recognized [04.16.2013]20 University of South Florida faculty members were honored on Monday, April 15, with a dinner and formal awards ceremony in Lifsey House on the USF campus in acknowledgment of their recent professional recognitions by a number of the world’s top scholarly and research organizations. Nine of the 20 honorees are College of Arts and Sciences faculty.
CAS researchers publish findings in prestigious journal[04.23.2013]Two researchers from the College of Arts and Sciences recently had their findings published in the Cell Death & Disease Journal. Edward Haller, Department Integrative Biology, and Meera Nanjundan, Department of Cell Biology, Microbiology and Molecular Biology, utilized molecular biology, histology and electron microscopy to study the cellular response of normal and malignant ovarian epithelial cells to iron in their environment.
USF researchers publish findings in Biology Letters[04.15.2013]Andrea Liebl and Lynn (Marty) Martin’s research was published in the journal Biology Letters. In the newly released paper, the authors measured hippocampal mRNA expression of glucocorticoid receptors in eight house sparrow (Passer domesticus) populations varying in age.
USF authors publish research in Oxford Journals[04.15.2013]Mariano Alvarez, Christy Foust, Holly Kilvitis, Andrea Liebl, Lynn (Marty) Martin, Christina Richards and Marta Robertson recently had their research published in the journal of Integrative and Comparative Biology.
USF student selected as regional finalist for White House fellowship[04.10.2013]University of South Florida student Terry-René Brown was selected as a regional finalist in the White House Fellows Program for leadership and public service. Brown is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Integrative Biology, and is also a graduate teaching assistant for Biology II lab.
USF’s IB professor to speak at the European Society for Evolutionary Biology [04.02.2013]University of South Florida’s Associate Professor in the Department of Integrative Biology Gordon Fox, Ph.D., has been invited to be a speaker at the 14th Congress of the European Society for Evolutionary Biology meeting in Lisbon, Portugal, Aug. 19-24, 2013. He will be presenting on "Demographic heterogeneity, phenotypic correlation structure and natural selection.”
USF faculty publish work in Journal of Herpetology[03.25.2013]Three faculty members from the University of South Florida Department of Integrative Biology recently published work in the Journal of Herpetology. Stacy Heath, Aaron Schrey, Henry Mushinsky and Earl McCoy all contributed to the paper titled, "Contrasting Genetic Differentiation of a Poorly Dispersing Lizard in Connected and Fragmented Scrub Habitats."
USF IB faculty publish work in the journal Fire Ecology[03.25.2013]Faculty from the University of South Florida Department of Integrative Biology Earl McCoy and Henry Mushinsky and co-authors Joseph Styga and Carol Rizkalla recently published an article in the journal Fire Ecology.
Darwin Day speaker to address evolutionary roots of altruism[02.07.2013]Ground squirrels stand upright and squeal to warn others of predators, even though it puts them at risk. Humans risk their own lives and safety to save others. Such altruistic behaviors have long fascinated scientists like Lee Dugatkin, who ponders the evolutionary roots of caring -- perhaps fittingly on St. Valentine’s Day!
At 6 p.m. on Feb. 14, in the TECO Room in the Education building, Dugatkin will address “The Evolution of Altruism: From Darwin to Today.”
15 USF faculty named AAAS Fellows [11.29.2012]The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has named 15 faculty at the University of South Florida as AAAS Fellows this year. With expertise that ranges from stem cells, climate change and toxicology to graduate education, computer science and blueberries, USF’s 2012 AAAS Fellows are an outstanding example of the high level of teaching, research and scholarship at USF.
Oktoberfest spurs great collaborations[10.26.2012]Faculty members love it. Students love it. The University of South Florida’s College of Arts and Sciences’ Oktoberfest is a fun event, but it’s more than a festive get-together. It’s where great collaborations are born. That’s why this annual event has been growing from year to year since its inception in 2006.
Evolving field of behavioral epigenetics[10.08.2012]A plant that is unremarkable in one environment becomes an invasive species in another, pushing through house foundations and sprouting up through roads. A house sparrow that’s a perfectly charming resident of the English countryside is transported around the world, where it wipes out other bird species with aggressive behavior and harbored diseases.
Investigating invasive species[09.10.2012]A new University of South Florida study of house sparrows, which have become one of the world’s most common invasive species, is providing scientists with physiological and behavior markers that could help keep them a step ahead of the next animal invasion.
USF study: Frogs getting sick from climate change[08.16.2012]Scientists studying the rapid decline of the world’s frog populations have suspected that fluctuating temperatures brought on by climate change might make frogs vulnerable to disease.
Ph.D. student participates in new teaching program[07.24.2012]Henry W. Custin stands at the front of the classroom at Hillsborough Community College in jeans and a pastel-colored shirt, collar unbuttoned.
Ph.D. student wins prestigious NSF fellowship[05.24.2012]A University of South Florida alumna has received a prestigious National Science Foundation Research Fellowship grant, which will provide a $30,000 stipend and tuition for a maximum of three years.
Common fungicide wreaks havoc on ecosystems[05.16.2012]Chlorothalonil, one of the world’s most common fungicides used pervasively on food crops and golf courses, was lethal to a wide variety of freshwater organisms in a new study, University of South Florida researchers said Wednesday.
USF student receives competitive NOAA scholarship[04.13.2012]Sarah Seabrook of the University of South Florida has been awarded the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Ernest F. Hollings scholarship. The Hollings Scholarship Program provides undergraduate students with awards that include academic assistance (up to a maximum of $8,000 per year) for full-time study during the 9-month academic year and a 10-week, full-time internship position during the summer at a NOAA facility.
Biology Ph.D. student wins Guy Harvey Scholarship[02.13.2012]University of South Florida biology doctoral student Laura Habegger has won one of five Guy Harvey Scholarships to continue her research on how the principles of physics and engineering might explain how fish and sharks function and lead to better management strategies.
Lecture to focus on teaching evolution[02.06.2012]In celebration of the birthday of Charles Darwin, the University of South Florida welcomes renowned science educator, Eugenie Scott, who argues that students cannot understand science without grasping the centrality of evolution. Scott will present a public lecture at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 9 in FAH 101 on Florida’s ‘Critical Thinking’ Bills: Creationism du jour?”
USF students assist on shark expedition[11.15.2011]A few University of South Florida marine biology undergraduate students did more than just watch when joining their professor and the Mote Marine Laboratory on a shark expedition.
Undergraduate students working on shark research[10.05.2011]While some University of South Florida students opt to spend their summer days relaxing, other students like Chelsea Conley and Ryan McKenzie choose to gain hands-on research experience. They spent all summer and the current fall semester working alongside renowned shark expert Philip Motta, a professor in the Department of Integrative Biology.
USF professor awarded BP grant[07.08.2011]A crucial University of South Florida research project examining the impact of last year’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill on the often overlooked ecosystem of Gulf beaches will continue after winning a coveted grant from a BP-funded research program.
USF study finds common fungicide lethal for frogs[04.13.2011]Chlorothalonil, a common fungicide used around the world on farms and golf courses, has been found to be lethal to frog tadpoles at levels below what regulators have said are safe environmental concentrations, according to a University of South Florida study published in one of the nation’s leading environmental journals.
USF research included in Encyclopedia Britannica[04.11.2011]Important findings from a University of South Florida research study on sea slugs have been included in the Encyclopedia Britannica’s “Book of the Year,” which highlights the most important scientific discoveries from 2010.
USF study looks at invasive species[04.08.2011]Worldwide, invasions threaten native species and communities, degrade natural areas, decrease crop yields and cost billions to eradicate. Notorious invasive species such as Burmese pythons, Melaleuca, Cuban tree frogs and fire ants, have consumed the attention -- and substantial resources -- of Florida and elsewhere.
USF scientist unlocks mystery of high-performance toad tongues[03.25.2011]How do toads, perhaps the least athletic of frogs, feed on fast moving insects? Biologists have known for decades that toads snare prey by flipping their sticky tongues out in a flash of an eye--just a few thousandths of a second--far faster than any other movements the often-sluggish creatures make.
Professor edits journal's special issue[02.04.2011]Two years ago, Lynn B. (Marty) Martin received a call inviting him to be the lead editor of a special issue on “Ecological Immunology” in the renowned British Ecological Society’s journal “Functional Ecology.”
USF study examines whale shark eating habits[10.29.2010]How does earth’s biggest fish dine on the tiniest marine critters? New research reveals how whale sharks filter feed in the wild and links their feeding anatomy, behavior and ecology as never before.
USF: No visible oil found in offshore sand cores[10.08.2010]A team of University of South Florida researchers studying the impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill on northern Gulf beaches say areas just offshore from some of Florida’s most heavily oiled beaches appear to be free of visible oil contamination in the sediments.
Tracking beach ecosystems in wake of oil spill[09.01.2010]In the aftermath of the BP oil spill, the focus on Florida beaches has been whether they are cleaned of oil or not.
But USF Professor Susan Bell, chair of the Department of Integrative Biology, is investigating a more complex set of questions about beaches and their inhabitants: whether the interwoven communities of plants, small crabs, clams, turtles, birds and other critters are a functioning food web or have feeding relationships become altered on beaches impacted by the nation’s largest environmental disaster.
The Nose Knows: Sharks smell in stereo[06.10.2010]Shark attacks have been studied for years by researchers who hope to unlock mysteries around how the predatory animals use their senses. The answers may provide scientists with information that can help people – though in an unexpected way when it comes to the sense of smell.