Author Archives: theapop

The Bermuda Seaweed Project: Education and Outreach

 As a graduate student studying Bermuda’s seaweed biodiversity, I had the good fortune of spending a year in the islands, collecting thousands of macroalgal specimens for the Bermuda Seaweed Project with support from NSF Award No. 1120652. While diving Bermuda’s … Continue reading

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Aunt Ruby’s Got Good Genes

Few edible plants inspire the nostalgia or controversy that a tomato does; a quick Google search uncovers hundreds of articles and blog posts whose authors covet the tomatoes of yore, and admonish modern day supermarket–bound tomato handling practices like forced … Continue reading

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Oh What a Big If

A team of scientists led by Armen Y. Mulkidjanian at the University of Osnabrück in Germany have invoked Charles Darwin’s “warm little pond” scenario to challenge one of the most prevalent views held in evolutionary biology— that life originated in … Continue reading

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Photosynthetic organisms survive in mammalian cells: Are Dryads no longer for fairy tales?

In “On the Difficulty of Conjuring Up a Dryad,” Sylvia Plath writes, But no hocus-pocus of green angels Damasks with dazzle the threadbare eye; My trouble, doctor, is: I see a tree, And that damn scrupulous tree won’t practice wiles … Continue reading

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Novel Defenses: Gene Duplication Events Shape the Evolution and Fitness of Daphnia pulex

Daphnia are keystone species in their natural ecosystems, and model organisms for scientists.  Because they are speciose, ubiquitous in freshwater habitats, and can develop a wide range of phenotypes in response to environmental factors, these crustacean arthropods are often used to … Continue reading

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Gut microbiome studies lend significance to the idiom “you are what you eat”

The human intestine is an ecosystem that supports up to 100 trillion microbes—a cell number that is roughly ten times greater than the human cells that comprise our bodies. In addition to the vast number of cells comprising the microbial … Continue reading

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