Welcome to Julia Riegler

Approaching the end of Fall 2021 semester and the onset of frosty weather, we extend a warm welcome to the newest member of our lab, Julia Riegler. Julia is an OSU sophomore who will be working with Andrew Woodruff to investigate the effect of existing aneuploidies on the genetic architecture of C. albicans. Welcome!

Julia Riegler

Investigating the influence of existing aneuploidies on gain or loss of chromosome copies in C. albicans.
Position:
Undergraduate Research Assistant
Degree:
BS Microbiology (major), Military Science (minor)

Award Announcement – Collaborative Research 2124995 to Dr. Matthew Anderson

Dr. Matthew Anderson was awarded an NSF Collaborative Research award (#2124995) entitled: Assessing the bioethical impacts of an Indigenous scholars network in genomics.

Engagement of Indigenous communities by scientific researchers is riddled with examples of scientific misconduct and a lack of direct benefit to participants and their communities. The Summer internship for INdigenous peoples in Genomics (SING) short course offers training and tools for early career Indigenous scientists to engage in the research process and community members to guide their communities in making informed decisions about research. Alumni of SING and affiliated faculty have organized through the workshop to present ethical concerns around current frameworks of scientific engagement to the general scientific community and to raise the collective voice of Indigenous people in genomics research. However, the impact of SING in its mission to inform participants in genomics research in Indigenous communities and build out networks of collaborating Indigenous researchers have not been explicitly tested. This study defines the role and impact of SING in shaping views of research and incorporating
Indigenous researchers into scholarly networks among Indigenous alumni and faculty. Long-term assessment of training programs such as SING have not been investigated to any great extent such that this can serve as a model for determining the effectiveness of short course scientific training programs.

Recognizing that genomic research is inherent in future medical, scientific, and translational research, the inclusion and involvement of Indigenous people is important and the role of SING to facilitate this engagement is unparalleled. In this project, the investigators objectively measure the impact of the SING program by eliciting the perceptions and understandings of genome science and ethics engagement of past SING participants and faculty through focus groups surveys, and social network analysis. Specifically, the project engages SING alumni and participants by 1) elucidating Indigenous perspectives on genetic research and scholarship, 2) defining interactions and influences initiated by SING among Indigenous genomics scholars, and 3) developing and delivering topic specific training for the general public and SING alumni. Findings from this work will inform in-person training for the SING program and engagement of the general scientific community to impact research approaches, scholarship, and public policy.

This project was funded through the ER2 program by the BIO directorate.

This award reflects NSF’s statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation’s intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

https://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward?AWD_ID=2124995&HistoricalAwards=false

Fall update

Much has happened in Anderson Lab since the last update.

After his graduation, Dr. Matthew Dunn has started a new job at VWR (part of Avantor). Congratulations and all the best, Matt! Luckily for us, he is still stationed in Columbus, so we get to meet him whenever he comes around the OSU campus!

We are also joined by three (yes, that’s right!) new lab members:

Mandy Joers


joers.1@osu.edu
Development of virtual lab infrastructure, research analysis & performance of computational systems.
Position:
Software Engineer/Informatics
Degree:
University of Wisconsin-Madison, BS Physics; BS Philosophy

Lina Gokhale

Quantitative genetics and experimental evolution of C. albicans.
Position:
Undergraduate Research Assistant
Degree:
Health sciences (major), pharmaceutical sciences (minor)

Dale Lingo

Analysis of anti-fungal tolerance and resistance in tetraploid C. albicans strains.
Position:
MCDB Rotation Student
Degree:
The Ohio State University, BS in Molecular Genetics

Exit seminar success

Thank you to everyone who was able to attend my seminar either in person or through Zoom. I appreciate all of the support, best wishes, and friendship throughout this process. I have always said research is a team sport and I just happen to play on the best team.

Sunshine and Chloe arrive

Sunshine abounds in Columbus as we exit the 2020-2021 academic year and move towards summer. We are excited to welcome Chloe Elliott as our new undergraduate lab assistant who will be working with Dr. Paula Sundstrom on an interesting collection of oral-passaged isolates. Welcome Chloe!

Chloe Elliott

Working with Dr. Paula Sundstrom to investigate the different genotypic and phenotypic behaviors of Candida albicans.
Position:
Undergraduate Lab Assistant
Degree:
Working on BS in microbiology, minor in environmental science

In the Lit: Intraspecies Transcriptional Profiling Reveals Key Regulators of Candida albicans Pathogenic Traits

The human commensal and opportunistic fungal pathogen Candida albicans displays extensive genetic and phenotypic variation across clinical isolates. Here, we performed RNA sequencing on 21 well-characterized isolates to examine how genetic variation contributes to gene expression differences and to link these differences to phenotypic traits. C. albicans adapts primarily through clonal evolution, and yet hierarchical clustering of gene expression profiles in this set of isolates did not reproduce their phylogenetic relationship. Strikingly, strain-specific gene expression was prevalent in some strain backgrounds. Association of gene expression with phenotypic data by differential analysis, linear correlation, and assembly of gene networks connected both previously characterized and novel genes with 23 C. albicans traits. Construction of de novo gene modules produced a gene atlas incorporating 67% of C. albicans genes and revealed correlations between expression modules and important phenotypes such as systemic virulence. Furthermore, targeted investigation of two modules that have novel roles in growth and filamentation supported our bioinformatic predictions. Together, these studies reveal widespread transcriptional variation across C. albicans isolates and identify genetic and epigenetic links to phenotypic variation based on coexpression network analysis.

Wang JM*, Woodruff AL*, Dunn MJ, Fillinger RJ, Bennett RJ, Anderson MZ. 2021. Intraspecies transcriptional profiling reveals key regulators of Candida albicans pathogenic traits. mBio 12:e00586-21. https://doi.org/10.1128/mBio.00586-21.

An official welcome to Emily Simonton

As we move into the warmer weather and with vaccination opening up to all in Ohio, we are very excited to welcome Emily Simonton, our newest graduate student. Emily attended Capital University here in Columbus to obtain their undergraduate degree and while this rotation cycle certainly was unique, they have already adapted and are fitting right in. Welcome Emily! We all look forward to sharing in science and social with you.

Emily Simonton

Continuation with and development of research projects related to the TLO expanded gene family
Position:
Graduate Student
Degree:
Capital University, B.A. in Biology with a minor in Criminology

In the Lit: High-dose saccharin supplementation does not induce gut microbiota changes or glucose intolerance in healthy humans and mice

Non-caloric artificial sweeteners (NCAS) are widely used as a substitute for dietary sugars to control body weight or glycemia. Paradoxically, some interventional studies in humans and rodents have shown unfavorable changes in glucose homeostasis in response to NCAS consumption. The causative mechanisms are largely unknown, but adverse changes in gut microbiota have been proposed to mediate these effects. These findings have raised concerns about NCAS safety and called into question their broad use, but further physiological and dietary considerations must be first addressed before these results are generalized. We also reasoned that, since NCAS are bona fide ligands for sweet taste receptors (STRs) expressed in the intestine, some metabolic effects associated with NCAS use could be attributed to a common mechanism involving the host.

https://microbiomejournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s40168-020-00976-w

Serrano J, Smith KR, Crouch AL, Sharma V, Yi F, Vargova V, LaMoia TE, Dupont LM, Serna V, Tang F, Gomes-Dias L, Blakeslee JJ, Hatzakis E, Peterson SN, Anderson M, Pratley RE, Kyriazis GA. High-dose saccharin supplementation does not induce gut microbiota changes or glucose intolerance in healthy humans and mice. Microbiome. 2021 Jan 12;9(1):11. doi: 10.1186/s40168-020-00976-w. PMID: 33431052; PMCID: PMC7802287.

Postdoctoral Researcher position open

The Anderson lab is seeking a Postdoctoral Researcher to join our team. Applicants to this position will be working as part of a collaborative project to determine how evolution acts on function of individual paralogs in a human fungal pathogen Candida albicans gene family. This work will require an understanding of general genetic and evolutionary concepts but applicants with diverse perspectives covering a range of biological approaches including genetics and genomics, evolutionary biology, molecular biology, cell biology, microbiology, and bioinformatics that hold a Ph.D. in a biological/biomedical field are encouraged to apply. Basic molecular biology skills will be required and applicants will ideally be situated to enter with some experience in bioinformatics or large dataset analysis. Willingness to learn these approaches including mastery of scripting languages (Python or R) will be required. This position is seeking an individual for a minimum of a three year time commitment and may continue for longer periods. Please explore this site for a more complete description of our research group.

We highly encourage applicants from underrepresented groups to apply. Our group holds up the importance of diverse life experiences and viewpoints to strengthen the whole of our group.