The Department of Biology sponsors a weekly seminar series during the Fall and Spring semesters. Seminars are held each Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. in the Biological Sciences Building East (BSBE), room 115, unless otherwise noted. In addition to this weekly seminar series, the department hosts the Walker Endowed Lectureship.  If you would like to be added to our weekly seminar e-mail reminder, please send your name and e-mail address to Lieu Jean at


Upcoming Seminars

  1. Seminar: Nicholas Priebe

    January 15, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
  2. Seminar: Steven Crone

    January 22, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
  3. Seminar: Lydia Bogomolnaya-Siegele

    January 29, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Emily and Robert Walker ’45 Lectureship in Biology

Originally formed as the Frontiers in Biology lecture series, the Departmental lectureship was established in 1984 as a mechanism to attract prominent scientists to Texas A&M University for an extended visit with our faculty and students. This program of formal seminars and relaxed one-on-one interactions has enabled faculty and students from our department as well as other departments on campus to hear first-hand about the forefront of biological research from the leading figures of various biological disciplines. In 2009, the Frontiers in Biology Lecture became the Emily and Robert Walker ’45 Endowed Lectureship in Biology.

Emily Walker is a resident of Dallas, Texas. Robert Walker, a world-renowned clinician and educator, passed away on April 28, 2011.

Emily attended UT and is a weaver. An active member of the Spinners and Weavers Guild in Dallas, she grows her own cotton in whiskey barrels in the backyard and has it ginned at the TAMU Extension Service.

Robert began at TAMU in 1941 just before the U.S. entered World War II. He had a strong interest in the Department of Biology’s program in pre-medicine and pre-dentistry. Although he was a member of TAMU’s class of ’45, he was drafted into the army in 1943 and assigned to the Baylor College of Dentistry in 1944. He earned a DDS degree there in 1947, and had a general practice in Waco, Texas, until 1951. He then was called back into the army during the Korean War. In 1953 he went to Graduate School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and from 1954-56 he did a residency in oral surgery at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas.

He was appointed to the Department of Surgery, UT Southwestern Medical School in 1956 to create the Division of Oral Surgery where he remained throughout the rest of his career, training over 200 residents. Among his many professional honors, he is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in England and a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland. Over the years, Dr. Walker retained close ties with TAMU, and he was actively involved in many of its organizations and advisory boards.

The Emily and Robert Walker ’45 Endowed Lectureship in Biology was established in 1995 to bring to the attention of the TAMU community outstanding research in the biological sciences.

The Frontiers in Biology lecture series in the Department of Biology was established in 1984 as a mechanism to attract prominent scientists to Texas A&M University for an extended visit with our faculty and students. This program of formal seminars and relaxed one-on-one interactions has enabled faculty and students from our department as well as other departments on campus to hear first hand about the forefront of biological research from the leading figures of various biological disciplines. In 2009, the Frontiers in Biology Lecture became the Emily and Robert Walker ’45 Endowed Lectureship in Biology.

Wallace Marshall,  Professor in University of California -San Francisco, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics

John Avise, Distinguished Professor, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, School of Biological Sciences,
University of Califonia at Davis

Fall 2011
Eric N. Olsen, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas
“Heart Making and Heart Breaking: New Strategies for Heart Repair and Regeneration”
“MicroRNA Control of Muscle Development and Disease: From New Biology to New Therapeutics”

Steve Block

John Nichols

Cynthia Kenyon, Department of Neuroscience, University of California-San Francisco

FALL 2004
Jim Hudspeth
, HHMI Investigator, F.M. Kirby Professor, The Rockefeller University

FALL 2002
David Baulcombe
, The Sainsbury Laboratory, John Innes Center, United Kingdom
“Everlasting tomatoes and a cure for cancer – A short history of gene silencing”
“Mechanisms of gene silencing and disease resistance in plants”


Sydney Kustu, Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, University of California, Berkeley
“Regulation of nitrogen metabolism in enteric bacteria: genomic and structural studies”
“Regulation of nitrogen metabolism in enteric bacteria: physiological and biochemical studies”

FALL 2000
Michael Young
, Laboratory of Genetics, Rockefeller University
“Life’s 24 hour clock: molecular control of circadian rhythms in animal cells”
“New parts for Drosophila’s circadian clock”

Marc H.V. Van Regenmortel
, Immunochemistry Laboratory, Institut de Biologie Moleculaire et Cellulaire du CNRS
“The Limits of Reductionism in Molecular Biology and Medicine”
“Analyzing Molecular Recognition and Structure-Function Relationships with Biosensors”
“The Potential of Synthetic Peptides as Viral Vaccines”

Andy McMahon, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Harvard University
“The role of Hedgehog signaling in constructing the mammalian embryo”
“Hedgehog actions and interaction at the cell surface”

Masakazu “Mark” Konishi
, Division of Biology, California Institute of Technology
“Brain Mechanisms of Sound Localization in Owls”
“Recent Advances in Birdsong Research”

Martin Heisenberg, Theodor-Boveri-Institut fuer Biowissenschaften, Lehrstuh fuer Genetik
“Flies, brains and the biological origin of the mind”
“Pattern recognition with stabilized eyes: Genetic approach to Drosophila brain function

FALL 1998
Ton Bisseling
, Department of Molecular Biology, Agricultural University, Dreijenlaan Wageningen Netherlands
“The phylogeny of nodulation: A comparison of legume nodulation and common plant development”
“Microspectroscopic approaches to studying nod factor signaling in living root cells”

Jeff Hall, Department of Biology, Brandeis University
“Molecular neurogenetics of rhythms in Drosophila: The midst of the fly’s circadian system and outward”
“Special topic for the rhythm system of Drosophila: Inward to the clock from environmental signals”

Marv Wickens
and Judith Kimble, Department of Biochemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison
“Signal transduction, growth control and the decision between mitosis and meiosis in C. elegans
“3′ UTRs and development”

FALL 1997
Jose Antonio Campos-Ortega
, Univerität zu Köln, Institute für Entwicklungsbiologie
“Mechanisms of a cellular decision in Drosophila: epidermogenesis or neurogenesis”
“Neurogenesis in zebrafish”

Corey Goodman
, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of California, Berkeley, Department of Molecular and Cell Biology
“Wiring up the brain: Genetic analysis of the mechanisms that generate neural specificity”
“To cross or not to cross: Genetic analysis of axon guidance at the midline”

Woody Hastings, Harvard University, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology
“The circadian biological clock from man to microorganism”
“Molecular and cellular organization of dinoflagellate bioluminescence: A luciferase with three active sites in one molecule”

FALL 1996
Brian Staskawicz
, University of California-Berkeley, Department of Plant Pathology
“Evolving concepts in plant-pathogen interactions”
“Signal transduction events specifying plant disease resistance”

Ken Keegstra
, Michigan State University, DOE-Plant Research Laboratory
“Chloroplasts are not green mitochondria: Differences and similarities in their protein import systems”
“Targeting proteins into and across the chloroplastic envelope membrane”

Chris Somerville, Stanford University, Carnegie Institute, Department of Plant Biology
“Genetic dissection of membrane and storage Lipid Composition and Function in Arabidopsis
“Production of polymers in transgenic plants”

FALL 1995
Lucy Shapiro
, Stanford University School of Medicine, Department of Developmental Biology
“The global control of cellular differentiation: The cell cycle”
“Temporal & spatial control of cell polydifferentiation”

Steven Reppert, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, Department of Biology
“Melatonin: The hormone of the 90’s”
“Molecular analysis of the period gene in silk moths”

Carol Gross
, University of California, San Francisco, Division of Oral Biology
“Regulation of the heat shock response”
“RNA polymerase: Initiation, elongation and termination”

Gordon Shepherd, Yale University School of Medicine, Section of Neurobiology
“From odor molecules to odor maps: The molecular basis of olfactory perception”
“Current issues in the analysis of odor processing”

FALL 1994
John Gerhart
, University of California, Berkeley, Department of Cell and Molecular Biology
“Organizing Spemann’s Organizer”
“Dorsalization of the Xenopus egg”

Paul Berg, Stanford University School of Medicine, Beckman Center for Molecular and Genetic Biology
“Genes and disease”
“Repair of deletions and double strand breaks in DNA by recombination in eukaryotes”

Elliott Meyerowitz
, California Institute of Technology, Division of Biology
“Genetic and molecular control of flower development: How to build a flower from parts”
“Genetic control of cell & organ number in developing flowers”

Tom Silhavy, Princeton University, Department of Molecular Biology
“Genetic analysis of protein secretion”
“Signal transduction in the purin regulon”

FALL 1993
Michael Rosenfield
, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of California, San Diego
“Space and time: Transcriptional regulation of mammalian organogenesis”
“A tale of two receptors: Codes of transcriptional activation”

Sharon Long, Stanford University, Department of Biological Sciences
“Rhizobium-Legume symbiosis: From pliny and prosopis to plasmids”
“Bacterial nod signals and plant cell responses in the rhizobium-legume symbiosis”

Adrienne Clarke
, CSIRO, Plant Cell Biology Research Centre, University of Melbourne
“Self-incompatibility in flowering plants: An overview”
“Gametophytic self-imcompatibility in the solanaceae”
“Extracellular secretions of the female pistil in Nicotiana alata, an ornamental tobacco”

FALL 1992
Brian Hall
, Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia
“Epigenetics: Waddington’s legacy and evolutionary developmental biology”
“Embryos and fossils”
“The developing skeleton: Models and mechanisms”

Chris Leaver
, University of Oxford, Department of Plant Science
“Mitochondrial genome organization and expression in higher plants”
“The molecular and biochemical basis of cytoplasmic male sterility”
“Genetic and metabolic regulation of glyotylate cycle genes in higher plants”

FALL 1991
Ghillean Prance
, Royal Botanic Gardens, United Kingdom
“The conservation and utilization of the Amazon rainforest”
“The varied vegetation of the Amazon region”
“Application of pollination and dispersal data to plant systematics”

Eric Davidson, California Institute of Technology, Division of Biology
“The sea urchin: Molecular basis of founder cell specification”
“How embryos work: A general and comparative interpretation of early embryogenesis”
“DNA binding regulatory factors of the sea urchin embryo”

Robert Day
, University of Delaware, Department of English
“How to write and publish a scientific paper”
“The history of scientific writing”

FALL 1990
Melvin Simon
, California Institute of Technology, Division of Biology
“Signal transduction in simple organisms”
“G proteins and signal processing in eukaryotic organisms”
“Interesting odds and ends”

Dale Kaiser
, Stanford University, Department of Biochemistry
“Regulation of gliding motility in Myxococcus xanthus
“A regulatory logic for multicellular development in Mycococcus xanthus
“Doing genetics with underdeveloped microbes”

Robert Bakker, University of Colorado, University Museum
“Hot- and cold-running dinosaurs”
“Dinosaurs: Bringing them back alive”
“Suboptimal evolution”

FALL 1989
Michael Menneker
, University of Virginia, Department of Biology
“Biological clocks of man and beast”
“Circadian organization among the vertebrates”
“The Tau mutation in hamsters as a tool in circadian analysis”

Stuart Kaufmann, University of Pennsylvania, Santa Fe Institute, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics
“Evolution and co-evolution on rugged fitness landscapes”
“Evolution of order in genetic regulatory networks”
“The four color wheels model of Drosophila development”

Jeffrey Palmer
, University of Michigan, Division of Biological Sciences
“Transposition and rearrangement of chloroplast and mitochondrial genes in plants”

W.J. Peacock, CSIRO, Division of Plant Industry
“Control of anaerobic gene expression in plants”

Paul Kaesberg, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Molecular Virology Laboratory
“Role of viruses in present day molecular biology”

FALL 1984
Eric Davidson
, California Institute of Technology, Division of Biology

International Lectureship in Biological Sciences

In 2007, the Ed Rachal Foundation provided funding to establish a lectureship in the Department of Biology specifically designed to bring internationally recognized scientists to the Texas A&M University campus to present their latest research and promote discussion with Texas A&M Professors.


Date Name Institution Title Host
1/15/2019 Nicholas Priebe Department of Neuroscience, The University of Texas at Austin TBD Ian Smith
1/22/2019 Steven Crone Divisions of Neurosurgery and Developmental Biology, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital TBD Dylan McCreedy
1/29/2019 Lydia Bogomolnaya-Siegele College of Medicine, TAMU TBD Debby Siegele
2/5/2019 Kumaran Ramamurthi Laboratory of Molecular Biology, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD TBD Joseph Sorg
2/12/2019 Susan Perkins American Museum of Natural History, New York TBD Charles Criscione
2/19/2019 Shu-Bing Qian Division of Nutritional Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY TBD Matt Sachs
2/26/2019 Steve Horvath Department of Human Genetics and Biostatistics, UCLA TBD Alan Pepper
3/5/2019 K.C. Huang Departments of Bioengineering and Microbiology and Immunology, Stanford “Model Systems for microbial ecology” Steve Lockless
3/12/2019 Spring Break
3/19/2019 Melissa Wilson Sayres School of Life Sciences, Arizona State University TBD Heath Blackmon
3/26/2019 Horacio de la Iglesia Department of Biology, University of Washington TBD Paul Hardin
4/2/2019 Lee Rubin Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, Harvard University TBD Jack McMahan
4/9/2019 Mick Hastings MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, UK TBD Paul Hardin
4/16/2019 Graduate Students Department of Biology, TAMU TBD Sarah Beagle
4/23/2019 Erin Goley Department of Biological Chemistry, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine TBD Beiyan Nan


Date Name Institution Title Host
 8/28/2018 Christine Merlin Department of Biology, TAMU “Clocks on the move: What monarch butterflies can teach us about circadian clocks and their role in seasonal biology” Deb Bell-Pedersen
 9/4/2018 James Smith Department of Biology, TAMU “The Discovery of Novel Peptide-Based Antimicrobials” Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/11/2018 Charles Criscione Department of Biology, TAMU “Causes and Consequences of Doing It with Yourself: Evolutionary Dynamics of Parasitic Flatworm Mating Systems” Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/18/2018 Alan Pepper Department of Biology, TAMU “Between a rock and a hard place: Evolutionary adaptation to an extreme terrestrial environment” Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/25/2018 Chris Janetopoulos Department of Biological Sciences, University of the Sciences, PA “Tuning of Excitable Systems regulates Cell Polarity & Tumor Progression” Mike Manson
10/2/2018 Sreekanth (Shrek) Chalasani Molecular Biology Laboratory, Salk Institute “Using C. elegans to study fear & develop new technologies” Jennifer Dulin
10/9/2018 Jeffrey Barrick Department of Biological Sciences, UT Austin “When Synthetic Biology Evolves” Tom McKnight

John Jellies

Department of Biological Sciences, Western Michigan University “Behind the eyes of a leech. How simple eyes encode complex image features that inform behavior” Wes Thompson
10/23/2018 Molly Schumer Department of Genetics, Harvard Medical School “Selection shapes the hybrid genome” Gil Rosenthal
10/30/2018 Joshua Beytebiere & Ananya Dasgupta Department of Biology, TAMU A. Dasgupta, “Determining genetic signatures of the cryptococcal response to Zoloft (Sertraline) by an integrated approach combining transcriptome and translatome” Sarah Beagle
11/6/2018 George Eisenhoffer Department of Genetics, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center “Visualizing Cell Turnover During Epithelial Tissue Homeostasis and Regeneration” Bruce Riley
11/13/2018 Gayatri Vedentam Department of Animal & Comparative Biomedical Sciences, University of Arizona “The Role of Surface Antigens in Clostridioides difficile Colonization” Joseph Sorg
11/20/2018 Simon Gilroy  Department of Botany, University of Wisconsin at Madison “Do plants feel pain: systemic signaling in Arabidopsis Larry Griffing
11/27/2018 Lars Dietrich Department of Biological Sciences, Columbia University “The interplay of metabolism & structure in microbial biofilms” Beiyan Nan
Date Name Institution Title Host
 1/16/2018 Ty Hendrik Department of Biology, University of North Carolina “Biomechanics of animal flight in the field” Amanda Adams
 1/23/2018 Rita Tamayo Department of Microbiology & Immunology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill “Phase Variation of Virulence Factor Production in Clostridium difficile Joseph Sorg
1/30/2018 Nicholas Spitzer Division of Biological Sciences, UC San Diego “Neurotransmitter switching in the adult nervous system and its impact on behavior” Jack McMahan
2/6/2018 Angela Hawkins & Kathleen McAllister Department of Biology, TAMU “Molecular Signatures of Selection, Drift, Introgression, and Gene Duplication in the Serpentine Endemic Plant Caulanthus amplexicaulis var. barbarae (Brassicaceae)”

“Using CRISPR-eas9-Mediated Genome Editing to Generate C. difficile Mutants Defective in Selenoprotein Synthesis”

Bruce Riley
2/13/2018 L. Ryan Baugh Department of Biology, Duke University “Persistent effects of nutrient stress across generations in C. elegans” L. Rene Garcia
2/20/2018 Mark Sheridan Department of Biology, Texas Tech University “INTEGRATION OF FEEDING, GROWTH, AND METABOLISM: INSIGHTS FROM STUDIES IN FISH” Duncan MacKenzie
2/27/2018 Anna Konovalova Department of Microbiology & Molecular Genetics, UT Houston “Lipoprotein RcsF is a surface exposed sensor of LPS integrity” Deborah Siegele

Seema Agarwala

Department of Molecular Biosciences, UT Austin “The cellular and molecular bases of Neural tube closure” Wes Thompson
3/20/2018 Cam Goater Department of Biological Sciences, University of Lethbridge, Canada “Zombie Hosts and Their Parasite Chauffeurs: the Ecology and Behavior of Dicrocoelium-Infected Ants” Charles Criscione
3/27/2018 Kim Reynolds Division of Biophysics, UT Southwestern “Using genomic data to map functional interactions in cellular systems” Steve Lockless
4/3/2018 Yunzi Gou & Ben Greenwell Department of Biology, TAMU “sox2 and sox3 cooperate to regulate otic/epibranchial placode induction in zebrafish”

“Rhythmic Food Intake Drives Rhythmic Gene Expression More Potently than the Hepatic Circadian Clock in Mice”

Bruce Riley
4/10/2018 Petra Levin Department of Biology, Washington University St Louis “Metabolism, Microbes and Mice: the impact of the environment on bacterial growth and physiology “ Beiyan Nan
4/17/2018 Jason DeBruyne  Mourehouse School of Medecine “Sex, diet, and circadian rhythms” Christine Merlin
4/24/207 Mary Lou Guerinot Department of Biological Sciences, Dartmouth “Ionome to Genome: Tales of Gene Discovery” Wayne Versaw
Date Name Institution Title Host
9/5/2017 Mike Smotherman Department of Biology, TAMU “Bat behavioral strategies for improving sonar performance in groups” Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/12/2017 Wayne Versaw Department of Biology, TAMU “Development of live imaging tools and methods to monitor phosphate allocation in plants at cellular and subcellular levels” Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/19/2017 Randy Morgenstein Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Oklahoma State University “RodZ affects E. coli cell shape by modulating both MreB dynamics and assembly” Ry Young
9/26/2017 Ed Luk Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Stony Brook University “The ins and outs of histone dynamics at yeast promoters” Matt Sachs
10/3/2017 Gerard Wong Departments of Bioengineering and Chemistry & Biochemistry
California NanoSystems Institute
“Surface sensing, motility appendages, and hydrodynamics in bacterial interactions with surfaces” Beiyan Nan
10/10/2017 Seok-Yong Lee Department of Biochemistry,
Duke University School of Medicine
“Structural basis of lipid-linked oligosaccharide transport in bacterial cell wall synthesis” Steve Lockless
10/17/2017 Tom Dever NIH/NICHD “Translation factor eIF5A acts as a sensor and effector for maintaining cellular polyamine homeostasis” Matt Sachs

José Alonso

Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, North Carolina State University “Translational regulation of plant hormone responses” Deb Bell-Pedersen
10/31/2017 Carolyn Cannon Department of Medicine, TAMU HSC “Wolves in sheep clothing: Killing bacterial pathogens with innocuous compounds” Richard Gomer
11/7/2017 Kathrin Schrick Division of Biology, Kansas State University “Integrating lipid metabolism with regulation of gene expression in plant development” Larry Griffing
11/14/2017 Josh Waxman Department of Pediatrics, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital “Mechanisms determining cardiac chamber size in zebrafish” Arne Lekven
11/21/2017 Jennifer Evans Department of Biomedical Sciences, Marquette University “A time for change: Network-level plasticity in circadian clock function” Jerome Menet
11/28/207 John Panepinto Department of Microbiology and Immunology, SUNY Buffalo “mRNA decay in C. neoformans: Letting go of the past for a pathogenic future” Matt Sachs
Date Name Institution Title Host
 1/17/2017 Ege Kavalali Departments of Neuroscience and Physiology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center “Studying synaptic transmission at the level of individual synaptic vesicles”  Mark Harlow
 1/24/2017 Liam McGuire Department of Biology, Texas Tech University “An emerging picture of bat migration ecophysiology” Amanda Adams
1/31/2017 Sebastian Kadener Department of Biological Chemistry, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem “Rounding the circle: Unraveling the functions and mechanism of action of circular RNAs” Jerome Menet
2/7/2017 Patrick Phillips Department of Biology, University of Oregon “The biology of stress and death: evolutionary and chemical engineering of resistant worms” L. Rene Garcia
2/14/2017 Suckjoon Jun Section of Molecular Biology, Division of Biology, University of California – San Diego “Predictability of cell size in bacteria” Beiyan Nan
2/21/2017 Criss Hartzell Department of Cell Biology, Emory University “Intriguing intersections: Chloride channels, phospholipid scrambling, and muscular dystrophy” Jack McMahan
2/28/2017 Wes Thompson Dept. of Biology, TAMU “What genetically modified mice and imaging tell us about aging and dystrophy in muscle” Richard Gomer
3/7/2017 Robert Docampo Department of Cellular Biology, University of Georgia “Polyphosphate and acidocalcisomes in eukaryotes” Patrick Suess
3/21/2017 Andrew Koh Department of Pediatrics and Microbiology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center “Bacterial-fungal Interactions in the Gastrointestinal Tract Modulate the Development of Invasive Microbial Infections in the Mammalian Host” Xiaorong Lin
3/28/2017 Mike Manson Dept. of Biology, TAMU “Chemotaxis to Cell-to-Cell Communication Signals and a Model for Segregation of Bacterial Chromosomes” Bruce Riley
4/4/2017 Lanying Zeng Department of Biochemistry & Biophysics, TAMU “Virus Interactions inside the Cell: Competition or Cooperation?” Xiaorong Lin
4/11/2017 Floyd Wormley Department of Biology, University of Texas at San Antonio “Induction of Long-Lived Trained Immunity by Macrophages Against Cryptococcosis in vivo Jiangeng Lin
4/18/207  Sneha Jani (Manson Lab)


Kushan Gunawardhana (Hardin Lab)

Dept. of Biology, TAMU “Chemotaxis toward Autoinducer-2 and it’s role in Biofilm Formation in E. coli. ” (Sneha)

“Loss of vrille abolishes activity rhythms by disrupting circadian output genes” (Kushan)

Bruce Riley
4/25/2017 Alex Keene Department of Integrative Biology and Neuroscience, Florida Atlantic University “Genetic and evolutionary dissection in of the sleep-feeding conflict” Christine Merlin
5/5/2017 (FRIDAY at Noon) Asha Rao & Andrew Tag Dept. of Biology, TAMU “Online and Interactive Technologies to Increase Student Engagement in Large Classes” Richard Gomer
Date Name Institution Title Host
8/30/2016 Mark Harlow Dept. of Biology, TAMU “Novel Signaling Pathways at Cholinergic Synapses” Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/6/2016 Xiaorong Lin Dept. of Biology, TAMU  “Sexual Reproduction, Morphological Transition, and Cryptococcal Virulence” Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/13/2016 Zemer Gitai Dept. of Molecular Biology, Princeton University  “The How and Why of Bacterial Cell Shape” Beiyan Nan
9/20/2016 Ginger Carney Dept. of Biology, TAMU “Contributions of Genes, Physiology, and Social Environment to Drosophila Reproductive Behaviors” Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/23/2016 (Friday) John Gladysz Dept. of Chemistry, TAMU “Frontiers of Contemporary Research in the Texas A&M Chemistry Department” Richard Gomer
9/27/2016 Arne Lekven Dept. of Biology, TAMU ” Wnt signaling and vertebrate axis patterning, or how the zebrafish gets a head (and a tail)” Deb Bell-Pedersen
10/4/2016 H. Corby Kistler Cereal Disease Lab, USDA and University of Minnesota “Cellular compartmentalization of mycotoxin synthesis” Xinping Xu
10/11/2016 Colleen Doherty Dept. of Molecular and Structural Biochemistry, North Carolina State University “Plants in the Fourth Dimension: using time to understand stress response pathways” Deb Bell-Pedersen
10/18/2016 Hiroshi Nishiyama Dept. of Neuroscience, University of Texas at Austin  “Structural plasticity of axons: circuit formation and re-formation” Mark Harlow
10/25/2016 David Bates Dept. of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine  “Overcoming blocks to DNA replication: topology-mediated replication fork pausing and reversal at protein barriers” Deborah Siegele
10/28/2016 (Friday) George Welch Dept. of Physics, TAMU “An overview of Physics at TAMU” Richard Gomer
11/1/2016 Ning Zheng HHMI and Dept. of Pharmacology, University of Washington “Targeting Ubiquitin Ligases: Hormones, Metabolites, & Drugs” Steve Lockless
11/8/2016 Robert Watson Microbial Pathogenesis and Immunology, TAMU HSC  “Recognition of extracellular microbial ligands regulates cell-intrinsic innate immunity” Xiaorong Lin
11/15/2016 Manfred Schartl Dept. of Physiologische Chemie, Universitat Würzburg, and TIAS Fellow, TAMU “From Fishroom to Bedside: Studying Human Skin Cancer in the Medaka and Xiphophorus Fish Models” Gil Rosenthal
11/22/2016 Sarah Beagle (Lockless Lab)Drew Anderson (Jones Lab) Dept. of Biology, TAMU Deletion of the E. coli K+Channel Results in Banded Motility Pattern (Beagle)Determining Genomic Signatures of Sexual Selection Utilizing Sex Hormone Response Elements (Anderson)  Bruce Riley
11/29/2016 David Popham Dept. of Biological Sciences, Virginia Tech “Cell wall degradation during Bacillus anthracis spore germination”  Joe Sorg
Date Name Institution Title Host
1/19/2016 U. J. McMahan Texas A&M University Active Zone Material and the Synaptic Transmission of Nerve Impulses Wes Thompson
1/26/2016 Stephen Caster
Xin Chen
Graduate Students, Texas A&M University Circadian Clock Regulation of mRNA Translation Through the Eukaryotic Elongation Factor eEF-2Sex-Determination and Wnt Pathways Regulate Developmental Muscle Remodeling in C. elegans Bruce Riley
2/2/2016 Paul Straight Texas A&M University Bacterial Fitness Programs for Competitive Success Xiaorong Lin
2/9/2016 Gillian Stanfield University of Utah Cell Signaling and the Battle for Reproductive success in C. elegans Rene Garcia
2/16/2016 Kenneth Cadigan University of Michigan Direct Transcriptional Repression by Wnt Signaling in the Drosophila Hematopoietic System Arne Lekven
2/23/2016 Tamara Doering Washington University From regulatory network modeling to host interactions in the pathogenic yeast Cryptococcus neoformans Xiaorong Lin
3/1/2016 Rudy Ortiz University of California, Merced Dynamic Alterations in thyroid Hormone-mediated Signaling to Prolonged Fasting in Northern Elephant Seals Duncan MacKenzie
3/8/2016 Ruud Buijs Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México The involvement of the suprachiasmatic nucleus in the etiology of the metabolic syndrome Jerome Menet
3/22/2016 Michael Nuccio Syngenta A GM Approach to Improve Yield Preservation in Maize Subject to Water Deficit at Flowering Tom McKnight
3/29/2016 Maria Harrison Cornell University The Arbuscular Mycorrhixal Symbiosis: An Underground Association Wayne Versaw
4/5/2016 W. Allen Miller Iowa State University Gaining a foothold in the cell: Translation of plant viral RNAs Tom McKnight
4/12/2016 Joanna Chiu University of California, Davis Interplay between posttranslational modifications regulate animal circadian clock Paul Hardin
4/19/2016 John Sczepanski Texas A&M University Targeting Structured RNAs Using “Cross-Chiral Recognition” Matt Sachs
4/26/2016 Stanley Froehner University of Washington The Dystrophin Signaling Scaffold in Muscle Function and Disease Matt Lee
5/3/2016 Gary B. Huffnagle University of Michigan Health System The Lung Microbiome During Health and Disease Joe Sorg
Date Name Institution Title Host
9/8/2015 Steve Lockless Texas A&M University Molecular mechanisms to achieve selective ion conduction in K+ channels Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/15/2015 Joseph Sorg Texas A&M University Identification of the Clostridium difficile bile acid germinant receptor reveals a novel pathway for spore germination Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/22/2015 Michael Nitabach Yale School of Medicine Neural Control of Economic Decision Making Jerome Menet
9/29/2015 Tom Meek Texas A&M University Mechanism-based Enzyme Inhibition Re-visited: A “Last Resort” for Recalitrant Drug Targets? Michael Manson
10/6/2015 Dan Minor UC San Francisco Structural and chemical biology investigation of ion channel function Steve Lockless
10/13/2015 Rachana Gyawali and Grace Smarsh Graduate students, Texas A&M University Pheromone Independent Sexual Development in the Fungus Cryptococcus neoformans.
Singing away from home: Song is used to create and defend foraging territories in the African megadermatid bat, Cardioderma cor.
Bruce Riley
10/20/2015 Daniel Kearns Indiana University Flagellar regulation in Bacillus subtilis. Beiyan Nan
10/27/2015 CANCELLED
11/3/2015 Arul Jayaraman Texas A&M University Identification and Functional Characterization of Bioactive Microbiota Metabolites Michael Manson
11/10/2015 Aimee Shen University of Vermont Formation and Germination of Clostridium difficile spores Joe Sorg
11/17/2015 Adriana Briscoe UC Irvine Color vision in the butterfly Heliconius erato: Genes, Physiology and Behavior Christine Merlin
11/24/2015 Sharon Amacher Ohio State University Tissue patterning with RNA oscillations: single cell resolution imaging of segmentation clock dynamics Arne Lekven
12/1/2015 Nancy Keller University of Wisconsin Translating biosynthetic gene clusters into fungal armor and weaponry Deb Bell-Pedersen
Date Name Institution Title Host
1/20/2015 William N. Zagotta University of Washington Regulation of ion channel gating by intracellular domains Steve Lockless
1/27/2015 Harold Burgess National Institutes of Health Deep brain sensory neurons and behavioral control in zebrafish Bruce Riley
2/3/2015 N. Louise Glass University of California at Berkeley Interplay between self and nonself recognition mechanisms regulates fungal communication and cell fusion Deb Bell-Pedersen
2/10/2015 George Pollak University of Texas at Austin Dissecting the auditory system with in-vivo whole cell recordings Michael Smotherman
2/15/2015 John Postlethwait University of Oregon Linking human biology to medical models in fish: the gar Bruce Riley
2/24/2015 CANCELLED
3/3/2015 Laura Corley Lavine Washington State University Mechanisms underlying condition-dependent growth: insights from the weapons of sexual selection Adam Jones
3/10/2015 Luis Vidali Worcester Polytechnic Institute Interplay between myosin, actin, and vesicles during polarized plant cell growth Larry Griffing
3/17/2015 SPRING BREAK
3/24/2015 Robert Britton Baylor College of Medicine Next-generation microbial therapeutics for the prevention and treatment of human disease Joe Sorg
3/31/2015 Katja Lamia Scripps Research Institute Cryptochromes link circadian clocks to the DNA damage response Christine Merlin
4/7/2015 Olaf Andersen Cornell Medical School Interactions of amphiphiles with membranes: implications for membrane protein function and drug development Steve Lockless
4/14/2015 Zachary Lewis University of Georgia How to organize your junk (DNA): Cross-talk between repressive chromatin modifications in Neurospora crassa Deb Bell-Pedersen
4/21/2015 Pablo Delclos Dept. of Biology, TAMU Context-dependent female mate choice: social and nutritional effects
4/21/2015 Marcus Li Dept. of Biology, TAMU Characterization of a mitochondrial taurine transporter
4/28/2015 Kimberly Huber UT Southwestern Disrupted synaptic scaffolds mediate hyperexcitable circuits in a mouse model of autism Ian Smith
Date Name Institution Title Host
9/2/2014 Zhilei Chen Texas A&M University Chemical Biology for Bioprocess Technology Development Deb Bell-Pedersen
9/9/2014 Christina Groznger Penn State University Genomic Analysis of Cooperation and Conflict in Social Insects Ginger Carney
9/15/2014 Theresa Koehler University of Texas Medical School at Houston Virulence Gene Expression by the Anthrax Bacterium: A Unique Regulator’s Role in Host-Pathogen Signaling Joe Sorg
9/23/2014 Sabrina Burmeister University of North Carolina Natural history as a compass in neuroethology: Understanding how frogs hear and see the world Pablo Delclos
9/30/2014 Bryan Phillips University of Iowa Asymmetric cell division in C. elegans: the Wnts of change? Bruce Riley
10/7/2014 Todd Castoe UT-Arlinton Snake genomes provide insight into the evolutionary origins of extreme phenotypes in vertebrates Gil Rosenthal
10/14/2014 Robin Fuchs-Young Texas A&M Health Science Center Breast cancer outcome disparities: in vivo models to investigate biophysiological determinants and mechanisms Tom McKnight
10/21/2014 Ramona Neunuebel University of Delaware Pathogen-mediate Regulation of Small GTPases Deb Bell-Pedersen
10/28/2014 David Denlinger Ohio State University Shutting Down for the Winter: An Insect Perspective Christine Merlin
11/3/2014 John Avise UC-Irvine Genetics in the Wild Adam Jones
11/4/2014 John Avise UC-Irvine Bring on the Clones: Sexual Abstinence in Vertebrate Animals Adam Jones
11/11/2014 Tianxin (Scarlett) Liu Dept. of Biology, TAMU Development of circandian pacemaker neurons in the Drosophila brain Bruce Riley
11/11/2014 Michael White Dept. of Biology, TAMU Tryptase and thrombin potentiate fibrocyte differentiation, and galectin-3 binding protein is the active agent in breast cancer’s inhibition of fibrocyte differentiation Bruce Riley
11/18/2014 Michael Smotherman Dept. of Biology, TAMU The hidden social lives of bats and their ultrasonic communication networks René García
11/25/2014 David Earnest Texas A&M Health Science Center Battle of the Bulge: Interactions between High-Fat Diets, Circadian Clocks and Inflammatory Mediators Fuel Metabolic Disorders Deb Bell-Pedersen
12/2/2014 Carrie Partch UC-Santa Cruz Silencing the Circadian Timekeeper in Human Cancer Jerome Menet
Date Name Institution Title Host
1/14/2014 Stacey Harmer University of California, Davis Deb Bell-Pedersen
1/21/2014 Jessie Zhang University of Texas, Austin Matt Sachs
1/28/2014 Tim Lightfoot Texas A&M University Deb Bell-Pedersen
2/4/2014 Gail Robertson University of Wisconsin Steve Lockless
2/11/2014 Amita Sehgal University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine Paul Hardin
2/18/2014 Sehresh Saleem Dept. of Biology, TAMU
2/13/2014 Akshaya Ravishandran Dept. of Biology, TAMU
2/25/2015 Marvin Whiteley UT-Austin Deborah Siegele
3/4/2014 Birgit Scharf Virginia Tech Mike Manson
3/11/2014 SPRING BREAK
3/18/2014 Weichun Lin UT Southwestern Wes Thompson
3/25/2014 Elise Stanley University of Toronto Huinan Li
4/1/2014 Carole Parent National Cancer Institute Richard Gomer
4/8/2014 Marla Sokolowski University of Toronto Ginger Carney
4/15/2014 Richard Gomer Dept. of Biology, TAMU Bruce Riley
4/22/2014 Kayla Bayless College of Medicine, TAMU Rene Garcia
4/29/2014 Michael C. Lorenz University of Texas Medical School – Houston Xiaorong Lin
Date Name Institution Title Host
8/1/2013 Danny Segal Tel-Aviv University Novel small molecules for inhibiting protein misfolding and aggregation in disease: Alzheimer’s as an example Ginger Carney
8/27/2013 L. Rene Garcia Dept. of Biology, TAMU Molecular Regulation of Feed Forward and Feedback Circuits used in Motivated Behaviors of Young and Aging C. elegans Adult Males Tom McKnight
9/3/2013 Emily Kasl Dept. of Biology, TAMU Evolution of life cycle complexity in parasites: To use or not to use a host? Bruce Riley
9/3/2013 Sharvani Mahadevaraju Dept. of Biology, TAMU X-Signal Amplification by Runt in Drosophila Sex Determination Bruce Riley
9/10/2013 Charles Criscione, Dept. of Biology, TAMU Parasite Inbreeding: More Than Meets the Eye and The Interplay of Transmission and Incest Thomas McKnight
9/17/2013 Ming Zhou Baylor College of Medicine Gating of the TrkH ion channel by its associated RCK protein TrkA Steve Lockless
9/24/2013 Josep Rizo UT Southwestern Medical Center Reconstituting Basic Steps of Synaptic Vesicle Fusion Huinan Li
10/1/2013 Kristen Maitland Texas A&M University Enabling early detection of oral cancer with optical imaging technology Ginger Carney
10/8/2013 Felix Yarovinsky UT Southwestern Medical Center Cell Type-Specific Regulation of Host Defense to Microbial Infection Xiaorong Lin
10/15/2013 Carla Finkielstein Virginia Tech University The Circadian Factor Period 2 Modulates p53 Stability and Function in DNA-Damage Signaling Deb Bell-Pedersen
10/22/2013 Bruce Riley Dept. of Biology, TAMU Formation of mechanosensory cells and neurons in the zebrafish inner ear: Sound mechanisms for development and regeneration Richard Gomer
10/29/2013 Patricia Brennan University of Massachusetts, Amherst Sexual Conflict and Genital Evolution in Waterfowl Dept. of Biology
11/5/2013 Dale Clayton University of Utah The ecological basis of coevolutionary history: Lessons from lice Charles Criscione
11/12/2013 Saikat Murkhopadhyay UT Southwestern GPCRs, Hedgehog Signaling, and Primary Cilia Hongmin Qin
11/19/2013 Borden Lacy Vanderbilt University Medical Center Understanding the structures and mechanisms of action for Clostridium difficile Toxins A and B Joe Sorg
11/26/2013 Susan Buchanan NIH (NIDDK) Structural basis for iron piracy by pathogenic Neisseria Steve Lockless
12/3/2013 Mike Sussman University of Wisconsin Quantitative Phosphoproteomics with Arabidopsis Plasma Membranes Reveals a Novel Mechanism of Growth Control Tim Hall
Date Name Institution Title Host
1/15/2013 Steve Vokes UT-Austin Transcriptional Mechanisms Underlying Hedgehog Mediated Regulation Bruce Riley
1/22/2013 Lani Wu UT-Southwestern Medical Center Reverse engineering cell polarity circuits Richard Gomer
1/29/2013 Rebecca Zufall University of Houston Mutation, migration, and sex: Evolutionary genetics in Tetrahymena thermophila Gil Rosenthal
2/5/2013 Jonathan Pierce-Shimomura UT-Austin Studying mechanisms and medicine for Alzheimer’s disease using C. elegans Rene Garcia
2/12/2013 Jay Dunlap Dartmouth University Medical School Genetic and Molecular Dissection of a Simple Circadian System Paul Hardin
2/19/2013 Molly Cummings UT-Austin From Fish Brains to Fish Skins—Understanding Behavioral and Signal Diversity via Mechanistic Studies Ray Cui
2/26/2013 Amrita Sherlekar Dept. of Biology, TAMU Cellular and molecular mechanisms of decision-making in C. elegans male mating behavior Rene Garcia
2/26/2013 Husniye Kantarci Dept. of Biology, TAMU A screen to identify genes regulating development of stato-acoustic neurons Rene Garcia
3/5/2013 Greg May MD Anderson Cancer Canter Determining signaling pathways in Aspergillus fumigatus in response to human neutrophils Deb Bell-Pedersen
3/12/2013 Spring Break
3/19/2013 Daniel Alexander Metabolon Insights into metabolic energy regulation through metabolomic analysis Tom McKnight and Wayne Versaw
3/26/2013 Harold Zakon UT-Austin Adaptive evolution of voltage-gated sodium channels: stories from electric fish, scorpions and mice Mike Smotherman
4/2/2013 Jennifer Herman Texas A&M University Identification and characterization of RefZ, a new regulator of FtsZ assembly Deb Bell-Pedersen
4/9/2013 Arturo Casadevall Albert Einstein College of Medicine Thoughts on the Origin of Microbial Virulence Xiaorong Lin
4/16/2013 Peter Setlow University of Connecticutt Health Center When the Sleepers Awaken – Germination of Spores of Bacteria of Bacillus Species Joe Sorg
4/23/2013 Kent Chapman University of North Texas Visualizing the Lipidome of Plant Tissues Wayne Versaw
4/30/2013 Zheng (Jake) Chen UT Medical School at Houston Small molecules for manipulating circadian rhythms to improve physiological well-being Deb Bell-Pedersen
Date Name Institution Title Host
8/28/2012 Xiaorong Lin Dept. of Biology, TAMU Morphogenesis and matrix-initiated signaling in the human fungal pathogen Cryptococcus Tom McKnight
9/4/2012 Robyn Lints Dept. of Biology, TAMU C. elegans male wiring: how to set yourself up for gentle degradation and good decisions Tom McKnight
9/11/2012 Thierry Lints Dept. of Biology, TAMU The siren song of the template: progress toward identifying the elusive memory of the tutor in the juvenile songbird brain Tom McKnight
9/18/2012 Hongmin Qin Dept. of Biology, TAMU Assembly and Localization of Intraflagellar Transport Particle in Chlamydomonas Tom McKnight
9/25/2012 Kathryn Ryan Dept. of Biology, TAMU Building the Nuclear Pore Complex: A Membrane Balancing Act Tom McKnight
10/2/2012 Jim Smith Dept. of Biology, TAMU Antibiotics from Tooth Scum and Dirt Tom McKnight
10/9/2012 Adam Jones Dept. of Biology, TAMU How molecular genetic studies of male pregnancy have changed our understanding of sexual selection Tom McKnight
October 16 CANCELLED
10/23/2012 Gil Rosenthal Dept. of Biology, TAMU Mate-choice Mechanisms and the Evolutionary Process Tom McKnight
10/30/2012 Christophe Herman Baylor College of Medicine Permanent phenotypic change caused by transient transcription and folding errors Debby Siegele
11/6/2012 Brad Johnson Dept. of Biology, TAMU Costs and Condition Dependence of Sexual Ornaments: You’re Doing it Wrong! Gil Rosenthal
11/6/2012 Nick Ratterman Dept. of Biology, TAMU Variation in individual-level preference functions and the nature of intersexual selection on multivariate song traits in Drosophila melanogaster Gil Rosenthal
11/13/2012 Steve Safe Texas A&M University The Long Non-coding RNA (lncRNA) HOTAIR is Oncogenic and a Drug Target in Pancreatic Cancer Richard Gomer
11/20/2012 Bill Margolin University of Texas Medical School at Houston Feeling the pinch: regulating bacterial cytokinesis Mike Manson
11/27/2012 Nancy Amato Texas A&M University Using Motion Planning to Study Protein Motions Deb Bell-Pedersen
12/4/2012 Youxing Jiang University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Structural Studies of Tetrameric Cation Channels Steve Lockless


Where and When: The 3rd Friday of the month at 3:30 pm in Butler 103

Purpose: These talks are meant to be informal chalk talks covering what you are working on, what you are thinking about, what you plan to work on, etc. in order to get constructive feedback on your ideas. Everyone is responsible for finding an alternate speaker if you cannot talk on your scheduled date.

Jan 15            CANCELLED
Feb 19            Mark Zoran
March 25       Ginger Carney
April 15          Adam Jones
May 20           Bruce Riley

Sept 18          Richard Gomer
Oct 16            Wayne Versaw
Nov 20          Gil Rosenthal
Dec 18           CANCELLED

June 19         Charles Criscione
July 17           Rene Garcia
Aug 21           Mark Harlow