Alverson Lab Website

Lab News

New funding from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation!

The Lewis and Alverson labs at the University of Arkansas were awarded $156,849 from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation's Marine Microbiology Initiative to increase the number and diversity of diatoms that can be genetically transformed for use as model species. Our plan is to screen 200-300 phylogenetically diverse diatom species using an iterative high-throughput method that leverages the state-of-the-art flow cytometry equipment at the U of A. You can read more about the program in the GBMF's press release, the Arkansas Newswire, and the U of A's Research Frontiers newsletter.

Secchi Day on Beaver Lake

Andy and Melisa participated in the 10th Annual Secchi Day on Beaver Lake, which provides all of the drinking water to Northwest Arkansas. They showed the nearly 600 people who attended how to use a microscope to look at the diatoms of Beaver Lake. A fun time was had by all.

Welcome, Melisa!

A new PhD student from Argentina, Melisa Kozaczek, arrived in the United States and joined the lab. She is carving out a project related to our NSF grant on bacteria-to-diatom horizontal gene transfer. Welcome, Melisa!

Lindavia paper featured on Diatoms of the United States website

Sarah Spaulding wrote a nice piece about Teo's paper on Lindavia and the importance of having a natural classification of diatoms. Her news story can be found on the Diatoms of the United States website. Thanks, Sarah!

Molecular Life of Diatoms conference

Andy just returned from 10 days in the Pacific Northwest, where he spoke about horizontal gene transfer in diatom genomes at the Molecular Life of Diatoms Conference at UW. Great conference followed by some diatom collecting around Oregon and Washington. Here's a link to the presentation.

New article on Cyclotella systematics

Cyclotella – described as a pennate diatom, and it was mostly downhill from there. In compiling a list of species in the diatom order Thalassiosirales, Teo Nakov came across a long-forgotten name, Lindavia, that cleans up a good deal of the taxonomic mess that is Cyclotella. Thanks to dilligent work by Wilson Guillory and the taxonomic expertise of Ed Theriot and Matt Julius. The paper was published today in Phytotaxa. OK, onto more interesting stuff.

Teo's cool R app for salinity common garden experiments

Teofil Nakov's been performing salinity experiments on some famously euryhaline diatom species, and he developed this fantastic R app to calculate and visualize growth rates, and determine whether a culture has acclimated. Accompanying RNA-seq data and manuscript forthcoming!

Teo and Elizabeth co-author multi-gene phylogeny of diatoms

Teo and Elizabeth co-authored an article in Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution presenting a new phylogenetic analysis of diatoms.

No Boundary Genomes

Andy gave a presentation on horizontal gene transfer in eukaryotes at the 'No Boundary Thinking' conference in Little Rock, AR. He got to hear Jeff Thorne give a cool talk on using disease data to build better codon models – very cool.

The Wilson's and the Bees

Lab undergraduate and bowling aficionado, Wilson Guillory, was accepted to a summer REU at the Smithsonian. He'll be studying bees. And stuff like that.

Missouri State Bears!

Andy visited his old lab mate, Beth Bowles, at Missouri State University and gave a talk to the Biology Department about diatom diversification. He'll put it on SlideShare once he figures that whole thing out.

Two new lab members

We're happy to welcome Yufei Li and Kameila Nedd as the newest members of the lab!