Clarissa Publishes Manuscript in Journal of Experimental Biology

Clarissa’s manuscript on the effects of photoperiod on the gut microbiome and aggression was recently published in the Journal of Experimental Biology! In this study, Clarissa found that SD males and females exhibited distinct changes in the relative abundance of gut bacterial phyla and families, and that these changes were associated with aggressive behavior. Collectively, her findings suggest a role for the gut microbiome in modulating social behavior in seasonally breeding animals.

A link for the manuscript can be found under the “Publications” page and can also be accessed here.

Kat and Beth Present at SICB 2020

Earlier this month, Kat and Beth gave oral presentations at SICB 2020, the annual meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, in Austin, Texas! Beth shared her recent findings on how maternal gut dysbiosis via antibiotic administration affects offspring behavior in Siberian hamsters. Kat was selected to compete for the Division of Comparative Endocrinology’s Aubrey Gorbman Award for Best Student Oral Presentation, where she discussed how melatonin modulates seasonal changes in neurosteroid levels and territorial aggression in male Siberian hamsters. Way to go, ladies!

Happy Holidays from the Demas Lab!

On Saturday, members and friends of the lab gathered at Greg’s house for our annual Christmas party, featuring a delicious BBQ-themed meal and a fun white elephant gift exchange! From all of us at the Demas Lab, we wish you a wonderful holiday season!

Sarah and Eamonn Awarded Hutton Honors College Research Grants

Demas Lab undergraduate students Sarah and Eamonn were recently awarded Research Grants from IU’s Hutton Honors College to support their independent research projects! These grants are awarded each semester to exceptional IU undergraduate students to allow them to pursue serious academic inquiry, develop intellectual independence, and build research skills and techniques. Congratulations, Sarah and Eamonn!

Kat Publishes Manuscript in Hormones and Behavior

Kat’s manuscript on the role of melatonin in mediating seasonal transitions in aggressive behavior and circulating androgen profiles was recently published in Hormones and Behavior! In this study, Kat showed that male hamsters given a long-term, short day (SD)-like melatonin signal, either via timed melatonin injections or exposure to a SD light cycle, elevate territorial aggression and reduce circulating androgen levels in response to an aggressive interaction. Together, these findings suggest that SD males transition from synthesis to metabolism of circulating androgens following an aggressive encounter, a response that is modulated by melatonin and culminates in increased aggression.

A link for the manuscript can be found under the “Publications” page and can also be accessed here.

Kat Presents at Neuroscience 2019

Earlier this week, Kat presented a poster at Neuroscience 2019, the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, in Chicago! At this conference, Kat discussed her recent findings on how seasonal variation in melatonin secretion alters neurosteroid profiles and aggressive behavior in male Siberian hamsters. Way to go!

Kat Featured on Endocrine Disruptors Podcast

Recently, Kat was featured on an episode of the Endocrine Disruptors Podcast! This podcast features interviews with scientists who study hormones and explores their journeys, identities, and research. In her interview, Kat discussed her research, including some cutting-edge techniques she is developing, and her journey to becoming a scientific researcher.

Click here to listen to the podcast! Also, for more information about Kat’s research, visit her website here.

Ekelé Presents at IN LSAMP Undergraduate Research Poster Session

Last week, Ekelé presented a poster at the Indiana STEM LSAMP (IN LSAMP) Undergraduate Research Poster Session! This summer, Ekelé completed an independent research project, in which he investigated the effect of birthing method on the innate immune activity of one week old Siberian hamsters. Way to go!

For more information about the NSF-funded IN LSAMP program, visit their website here.

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