Colton Kessenich's paper showing that Bolidomonas is haploid was just published
in Journal of Phycology. Bolidomonas is a flagellated unicell that is sister to diatoms. The results strongly suggest that the silicified Parmales are the diploid phase of a haplodiplontic life cycle in that lineage, making the diplontic life cycle of diatoms all the more interesting. Bolidomonas was discovered in 1997 by Laure Guillou, who wrote a nice piece highlighting our study.
International man of mystery, Abe Tucker, delivered a fabulous seminar in our department this week: "Gene conversion may limit longevity of asexual populations: a population genomic analysis of Daphnia pulex." Abe doesn't come to northwest Arkansas often, but when he does, he prefers Fayetteville.
The Alverson lab extends a hearty welcome to Teofil Nakov, the newest post-doc to join the lab. Teo will be figuring out how diatoms cross and conquer the salinity barrier. Welcome, Teo!
Colton Kessenich solved a longstanding mystery about the ploidy level of Bolidomonas
using NGS data. The manuscript is now available online
Norm Wickett is hiring a postdoc as part of our recently funded NSF grant:
Andy wrote a short op-ed for LiveScience
on diatom genomics. Thanks to Elizabeth, who provided most of the good pictures.
Andy talked diatoms with Kyle Kellams on Fayetteville's public radio station, KUAF, today. Here's a link
to the show.
Wilson apparently beat the odds
and is off to the Field Museum this summer!
As part of a recently funded project from the NSF to study the genomic factors driving the evolution and diversification of diatoms, the Alverson lab at the University of Arkansas is recruiting two PhD students in evolutionary genomics. Students will be broadly trained in wet lab research and computational biology.
The main Fayetteville campus of the University of Arkansas is located next to the historic city center in the heart of the beautiful Ozark Mountains, which offer a multitude outdoor recreational opportunities, including hiking, backpacking, mountain biking, and kayaking.
Exceptional students may be competitive for additional funding opportunities that will supplement the standard graduate stipend. The Department of Biological Sciences is actively recruiting Distinguished Doctoral Fellows (DDF) and Doctoral Academy Fellows (DAF). The DDFs have a salary range of $35,000-$40,000 for a 12-month stipend, and the DAFs have a range of $25,000-$30,000 for a 12-month stipend. Additional information is available here: http://grad.uark.edu/future/funding/index.php.
Contact Andrew Alverson for more information.
Kiley Jones defended her Honors Thesis today with a perfect balance of grace and spunk. Nice job, Kiley!
Congratulations to Wilson Guillory on being chosen for the Field Museum's summer REU program. He'll take a break from looking at diatoms to be doing yet to be determined research on millipedes.
Colton Kessenich successfully defended his Master's Thesis today. The first graduate from the Alverson Lab, and the first person (we think) to assess ploidy with heterozygosity data.
Elizabeth and Andy just returned from Austin. Matt Ashworth sent them back with 159 new diatom cultures. A big thank you to Matt and Ed Theriot for a great visit.
Our paper, led by Teo Nakov, on cell-size evolution in marine and freshwater diatoms was just published in Limnology and Oceanography