Upcoming Changes in People in the Gibbs Lab.

The Gibbs lab will undergo significant changes in people in the coming months.  Pending successful defenses of their theses in the near future (!), PhD students Matt Holding and Rob Denton will be leaving to take up postdoctoral positions. In June, Matt will be moving to Florida to first, take a position with Dr. Chris Parkinson, Department of Biology, University of Central Florida as a postdoc for a year on our NSF Dimensions of Biodiversity Grant on snake venom evolution before then moving to take up his two year NSF Postdoctoral Research Fellowship on morphological and venom evolution in snakes with Dr. Darin Rokyta, Department of Biological Science, Florida State University.  In August, Rob will move to Dr. John Malone’s lab in the Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Connecticut, to work on amphibian genome evolution (including unisexual Ambystoma salamanders).  Congratulations to both – they will be sorely missed!
Three migrants will arrive to join current PhD students, Scott Martin and Jamin Wieringa: Dr. Mike Broe, Dr. Alex Ochoa, and Alyssa Bigelow. Mike will take up a postdoctoral position as part of our NSF venom grant to work on genomic structure of snake venom genes. Alex will be joining us from the School of Natural Resources and the Environment, University of Arizona where he completed his PhD on Florida panther genomics. He will be working on an OBCP-funded project examining the genomic consequences of population bottlenecks on adaptive variation in Massasauga rattlesnakes. Finally, Alyssa will be joining the lab from Florida State University where she most recently has been working as a technician in the Rokyta and Lemmon Labs to take up a position as a PhD student working on the genomic basis of coevolutionary interactions between rattlesnakes and squirrels. Welcome to all!

Rob Denton – Publication in Functional Ecology

21 December 2016
Congratulations to Rob Denton on his recent publication in Functional Ecology  including videos (video) of salamanders on treadmills! (OSU press release) and to former undergraduate, Paul Hudson his publication in Herpetological Review (Hudson et al.).
 

Congratulations to Dr. Sarah Simley-Walters!

Sarah Smiley-Walters successfully defended her PhD thesis entitled “Interactions between Pigmy Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus miliarius) and a suite of prey species: a study of prey behavior and variable venom toxicity” on 9 December – congratulations!

The 2016 Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership Meeting

The 2016 Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership Meeting took place at the 4-H Center on the Ohio State University campus. The meeting was attended by over 80 people from OSU, the Ohio Division of Wildlife and other partners from across Ohio. Presentations included talks by Dr. Mazeika Sullivan on stream conservation and Dr. Steven Spear on eDNA and five short talks on OBCP-funded research (see program).

Postdoctoral Position in Snake Venom Evolution

The Gibbs Lab (https://u.osu.edu/gibbslab/) in the Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, Ohio State University has an opening for an NSF-funded Postdoctoral Research Associate for research on snake venom evolution. The postdoc will join a collaborative research group of US and Brazilian scientists funded through a joint NSF-FAPESP grant to study venom evolution in snakes at micro- to macroevolutionary timescales.  Members of the group include D. Rokyta (Florida State University), C. Parkinson (University of Central Florida) and L. Gibbs (Ohio State University), I. Avezedo, A. Moura, E. Hingst-Zaher (Instituto Butantan) and H. Zaher (Universidade de São Paulo). The specific project will focus on using comparative analyses to explore the links between venom variation at the molecular level and rates of speciation in venomous snakes but will also  be involved in research assessing links between the genomic, proteomic and functional variation in venom across species. There will be the chance to visit participating laboratories in the US and Brazil and participate in field work.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS:

  • PhD in evolutionary biology, phylogenetics. bioinformatics or a related field
  • Expertise in comparative analyses and/or molecular evolution
  • Fluency in a programming language such as Perl or Python
  • Record of publication

DESIRED QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Experience with analyzing genomic, transcriptomic and proteomic data
  • Experience with the use of high performance computing resources

START DATE AND DURATION

The position is available 15 September 2017. The initial appointment is for one year with the possibility of reappointment for three additional years pending satisfactory performance. Salary is $47.5K with full benefits.

APPLICATION PROCESS

Interested candidates should send the following to H. Lisle Gibbs (gibbs.128@osu.edu): 1) a CV, 2) Statement of research interests and how current professional abilities match possible project goals, 3) Names and contact information for three references. Review of applications will start 15 January 2017 with interviews taking place in February. I hope to offer the position to a candidate by March 2017.

ABOUT COLUMBUS

The Ohio State University campus is located in Columbus, the capital city of Ohio. Columbus is the center of a rapidly growing and diverse metropolitan area with a population of over 1.5 million. The area offers a wide range of affordable housing, many cultural and recreational opportunities, excellent schools, and a strong economy based on government as well as service, transportation and technology industries (see http://liveworkplaycolumbus.com/). Columbus has consistently been rated as one of the Top U.S. cities for quality of life, and was selected as one of the Top 10 cities for African Americans to live, work, and play by Black Enterprise magazine. Additional information about the Columbus area is available at http://www.columbus.org.

The Ohio State University is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation or identity, national origin, disability status, or protected veteran status.

Postdoctoral Position in Vertebrate Conservation Genetics

The Gibbs Lab (https://u.osu.edu/gibbslab/) in the Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, Ohio State University has an opening for a Postdoctoral Research Associate in Vertebrate Conservation Genetics. The postdoc will work on ongoing projects assessing levels of adaptive variation in populations of endangered Massasauga Rattlesnakes (Sistrurus catenatus) There is flexibility in terms of the specific project on which the postdoc will focus but will involve one or more of the following: 1) Development of new genetic tools based transcriptome analysis and DNA capture arrays to assess population variation in immune system genes 2) Analysis of existing data on population level variation in venom genes to infer how recent population bottlenecks have influenced levels of variation 3) Analyses of genomic-scale data using demographic modeling techniques to infer population histories (see Sovic et al. 2016. Heredity 117: 358-366).  The position is funded through the Ohio Biodiversity Conservation Partnership (https://obcp.osu.edu) and will involve interactions with the Ohio Division of Wildlife personnel. The postdoc will join an active lab with ongoing NSF-funded research on venom evolution in snakes and other projects on vertebrate conservation genetics.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS:

  • PhD in evolutionary biology, molecular biology, conservation genetics, bioinformatics or a related field
  • Expertise in population genetics, evolutionary genetics, or molecular evolution
  • Fluency in a programming language such as Perl or Python
  • Record of publication

DESIRED QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Experience with analysis of NGS sequence data
  • Experience with demographic modeling using high performance computing resources

START DATE AND DURATION

The position is available 1 September 2017. The initial appointment is for one year with the possibility of reappointment for multiple additional years pending satisfactory performance. Salary is $47.5K with full benefits.

APPLICATION PROCESS

Interested candidates should send the following to H. Lisle Gibbs (gibbs.128@osu.edu): 1) a CV, 2) Statement of research interests and how current professional abilities match possible project goals, 3) Names and contact information for three references. Review of applications will start 7 January 2017 with interviews taking place in February. I hope to offer the position to a candidate by March 2017.

ABOUT COLUMBUS

The Ohio State University campus is located in Columbus, the capital city of Ohio. Columbus is the center of a rapidly growing and diverse metropolitan area with a population of over 1.5 million. The area offers a wide range of affordable housing, many cultural and recreational opportunities, excellent schools, and a strong economy based on government as well as service, transportation and technology industries (see http://liveworkplaycolumbus.com/). Columbus has consistently been rated as one of the Top U.S. cities for quality of life, and was selected as one of the Top 10 cities for African Americans to live, work, and play by Black Enterprise magazine. Additional information about the Columbus area is available at http://www.columbus.org.

The Ohio State University is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation or identity, national origin, disability status, or protected veteran status.

Gibbs Lab Awarded NSF Grant for Study of Venom Evolution

The Gibbs Lab was one of multiple labs recently awarded a NSF Dimensions of Biodiversity (US) – FAPESP BIOTA (Brazil) grant to study venom evolution in venomous snakes from North, Central and South America (NSF Abstract). The grant is a collaboration between research groups at Florida State University (Darin Rokyta), University of Central Florida (Chris Parkinson), Instituto Butantan (Inacio Azevedo, Ana Moura, and Erika Hingst-Zaher) and USP (Hussan Zaher).

PhD position in Molecular Basis of Coevolution

The Gibbs Lab in the Department of EEOB at Ohio State University is interested in recruiting a Ph.D. student, to begin in Fall 2017, to develop a dissertation project that focuses on the molecular basis of coevolution between venomous snakes and their prey. The student would be part of a group conducting collaborative research to identify the genetic, protein and functional basis of the traits that mediate interactions between rattlesnakes and their mammalian prey in an ecological context (for example, see Holding et al. 2016. Proc R Soc B 283:20152841) with the specific focus of the dissertation being flexible depending on the research interests of the student. The student would also have the opportunity to be involved in a recently-awarded NSF Dimensions of Biodiversity grant on snake venom evolution that involves collaborations between institutions in the US and Brazil.

The ideal applicant would have prior research in population genetics or molecular ecology, molecular laboratory skills, strong quantitative skills and proficiency or interest in learning basic bioinformatics. Field experience with vertebrates would be beneficial. A Master’s degree is preferred but not required.

The student would join an active lab which applies genomic techniques and bioinformatics analyses to a wide range of questions in the evolutionary biology and conservation genetics of snakes, birds, and salamanders. The Department of EEOB provides year-round financial support (~ $28K/yr plus benefits and tuition) for PhD students for the duration of their program.

Interested students should contact Dr. H. Lisle Gibbs, Department of EEOB, Ohio State University at gibbs.128@osu.edu with a statement of interest, a CV, transcripts and GRE scores if available. I will start reviewing applications on 15 October.  Please see the lab (https://u.osu.edu/gibbslab/) and department (http://eeob.osu.edu/) websites for more information.