People

 Principal Investigator

schulze

Dr. Anja Schulze

Bld. # 3029, Office 258

Research Interests
Phylogeny and population genetics of marine invertebrates, particularly polychaete worms. Reproduction and development of marine invertebrates. Deep sea biology.

schulzea@tamug.edu 

+1 (409) 740-4540


Ph.D. Students

guzman

Heidi Jane de Guzman

Education
B.S. Universiti Putra Malaysia (2007)
M.S. Universiti Putra Malaysia (2011)

Research Interests
I am studying the effects of elevated carbon dioxide and ocean acidification on the genetic diversity and gene expression of polychaetes in shallow carbon dioxide vents and non-acidified control areas in the Mediterranean Sea. I will use high-throughput Illumina sequencing of the sabellid polychaete Amphiglena mediterranea to examine differential gene expression between the vent and the control sites.

heidijane07@tamug.edu 


hilliard

Justin Hilliard

Education
B.S. Fairmont State University (2013)

Research Interests
My general research interests are in evolutionary biology, more specifically in elucidating patterns and causes of speciation. Questions of interest to me are those related to the phylogeography, population genetics/genomics, and phylogenetics/-genomics of cryptic species complexes. Members of a cryptic species complex often look nearly identical but are quite diverse with regards to their genetics and life history strategies, providing an array of research opportunities. I plan to use the Capitella capitata cryptic species complex (Annelida, Capitellidae) as a model to answer specific questions such as:

• How many species exist along the US Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts?
• What is the population connectivity along the Texas coast and what environmental factors are playing a role in the connectivity?
• How many developmental strategies exist along the coast of Texas and, more generally, in the Gulf of Mexico?

I’m also interested in the phylogeny of the family Capitellidae in general and the genus Capitella specifically.

jhilliard@tamu.edu 


mellard

Sara Mellard

Education
B.A. College of the Atlantic (2008)

Research Interests
I have a bachelor's degree in human ecology from College of the Atlantic and a background in marine mammal research and exotic animal husbandry and management. My research interests include coral reproduction and dispersal and the community composition and dynamics of artificial reefs. I am interested in examining the environmental and ecological impacts of artificial reefs in the Gulf of Mexico and their ability to serve as vectors for range expansion of non-indigenous and invasive species such as the orange cup coral, Tubastraea coccinea. I also have a broad interest in symbiotic associations between cnidarians and other invertebrates and how these relationships influence third-order interactions in the reef community.

smellard28@tamu.edu 


hajduk

Marissa Hajduk

Education
B.A. Canisius College (2005)
B.A. 2010 SUNY Buffalo State College (2010)
M.S. Candidate University of Alaska Fairbanks

Research Interests
My research background comes from both fresh and salt water. I studied invasive molluscs and their corresponding symbionts in the lower Great Lakes as an undergraduate, and as a master’s student I looked at ecology of benthic invertebrates in the Chukchi Sea (AK). My M.S. work focused on describing the density and distribution patterns of benthic marine meiofauna in the Arctic. My current research interests include benthic ecology, meiobenthology, and using genetics to map meiofaunal communities. I am also interested in SCUBA diving techniques and education, and will be pursuing certification as a scientific diver.

mmhajduk@tamu.edu 


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 Undergraduate Research Scholars

schirai

Ren Shirai

Education
Texas A&M University at Galveston - current

Research Interests
I am a senior marine biology major, currently working on an undergraduate scholar thesis project with Camille Perrigo, under the supervision of Dr. Schulze. Our project entails a cryptic species analysis of human infecting trematodes, Austrobilharzia variglandis and Euhaplorchis californiensis, in Galveston Bay through the use of molecular techniques such as PCR and DNA sequencing. Revealing cryptic speciation within these species will aid in recognizing their unidentified diversity, detecting multi-species infections, and possibly in understanding mechanisms of diseases.

renskil792@tamu.edu 


perrigo

Camille Perrigo

Education
Texas A&M University at Galveston - current

Research Interests
I am a senior at Texas A&M University at Galveston, expecting to graduate May 2015. I am currently doing Undergraduate Research with a fellow student, Ren Shirai. We are conducting cryptic species analysis on trematodes: Austrobilharzia variglandis and Euhaplorchis californiensis, in order to help provide further information on human infecting trematodes.

camilleperrigo@gmail.com 


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