This week, Kat gave an oral presentation at SICB 2021, the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology’s annual meeting! In her talk, she discussed some of her recent findings on the role of adrenal melatonin 1a receptor (Mel1aR) signaling in modulating territorial aggression in male Siberian hamsters. Way to go, Kat!
Earlier this week, members of the lab gathered remotely on Zoom to celebrate the holiday season and the end of a memorable fall semester! From all of us at the Demas Lab, we wish you a wonderful and safe holiday season!
Former Demas Lab graduate student Dr. Nikki Rendon’s manuscript on the role of melatonin in regulating steroid metabolism and aggressive behavior in female hamsters was recently published in the Journal of Neuroendocrinology! In this study, Nikki showed that females given a SD-like melatonin signal, either via timed melatonin injections or exposure to short-day photoperiods, reduced circulating dehydroepiandrosterone and testosterone levels, but increased circulating estradiol levels following an aggressive interaction. She also found that LD and SD females showed distinct relationships between aggression and neural aromatase abundance. Together, her findings suggest that melatonin increases non-breeding aggression by elevating circulating steroid metabolism after an aggressive encounter and by regulating behaviorally-relevant neural circuits in a region-specific manner.
A link for the manuscript can be found under the “Publications” page and can also be accessed here.
Both Kat and Beth received Core Pilot Grants from the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI)! These research grants are awarded semi-annually to promote the use of technologies and expertise afforded by the Indiana CTSI Core Facilities available at all partner institutions, including Indiana University. Congratulations, ladies!
Beth was recently awarded a Gut Microbiome, Yogurt, and Probiotics Fellowship Grant from Danone North America! This grant is awarded annually to two graduate students interested in exploring how the gut microbiome, probiotics, and yogurt help support and maintain human health and wellness. Congratulations, Beth!
Congratulations to our spring 2020 graduates: lab manager Jessica Deyoe, who earned her Master’s of Public Health, and undergraduate students Justuss Boice, Eamonn Duffy, Sarah Henderson, and Grace Murphy! All of us in the Demas lab are so proud of all you have accomplished, and we wish you the best of luck on your future endeavors!
Kat received a Louise Constable Hoover Fellowship from the Department of Biology! This fellowship is awarded annually to three senior graduate students in the Evolution, Ecology, and Behavior graduate program to support research expenses. Congratulations, Kat!
Kat and Beth received predoctoral fellowships from Indiana University’s Center for the Integrative Study of Animal Behavior (CISAB)! This fellowship is awarded annually to outstanding IU graduate students who exemplify an integrative approach to the study of animal behavior through their research, teaching and other professional activities. Way to go, ladies!
For more information about CISAB, visit their website here.
Cat received an honorable mention for her NSF Graduate Research Fellowships Program application! This competitive program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines. Congratulations, Cat!