Research Interests: Humans greatly depend on the ecosystem services provided by freshwater resources, and yet anthropogenic impacts on aquatic ecosystems continue to be critical. I am interested in the ecological effects of exotic species, ultraviolet radiation, temperature, and other stressors on aquatic ecosystems.
Current Projects: Ecology of the exotic water flea Daphnia lumholtzi, comparing the UV sensitivities of less-well-studied zooplankton taxa (e.g., Bosmina), and effects of leaf litter leachates on zooplankton life history. I am also involved in a collaborative project examining the effects of land use on freshwater turtle populations.
Research Interests: Research in my laboratory focuses on the potential health effects of exposure to endocrine disruptors. Endocrine disruptors are chemicals within our environment (e.g. components of plastics, pesticides, herbicides, pharmaceutical contaminants in groundwater, hormones in dairy manure) that interfere with hormone signaling once they enter the body. Many endocrine disruptors mimic or block the actions of the sex hormones, estrogens and androgens. Thus, physiological processes that are known to be regulated by our endogenous sex hormones (e.g. sexual differentiation, reproduction, bone ossification) are susceptible to disruption by these chemicals. Furthermore, the incidence and progression of certain diseases that are hormone sensitive (e.g. endometriosis, breast cancer, prostate cancer, inter-sexed conditions) are suspected to be influenced by exposure to endocrine disruptors.
Current Projects: Currently, two lines of research that focus on endocrine disruption are underway in my laboratory. They include 1) an assessment of the ability of plant estrogens (e.g., EGCG, a component of green tea) to mitigate or block the proliferative effects of estrogenic endocrine disruptors on breast cancer cells; and 2) an examination of the impact of estrogenic endocrine disruptors on skeletal development in zebrafish.
Research Interests: Dr. Summers’ research interests include empirical macroeconomics, business cycles, time series econometrics, Bayesian econometrics, forecasting, and economic indicators. Recent research with HPU students has focused on the impact of renewable fuel standards in the US on feeder cattle prices. Specifically, his students use vector autoregression models to answer such questions as the effects of corn prices, corn supply, and percentage of corn delegated to ethanol production on the price of feeder cattle.
Research Interests: My lab researches the biochemical, physiological, and ecological adaptations of plants to environmental stress. Recent field expeditions with students have taken us into the cloud forests of Colombia, the Southern Alps in New Zealand, and the Snowy Range in Wyoming. Visit our lab page for more details.
Current Projects: How clouds affect plant carbon and water relations, function of purple spots in the wintergreen orchid Tipularia discolor, effects of seasonal leaf movements on micrometeorology and ecophysiology of the evergreen fern, Polystichum acrostichoides
Dr. Cindy Vigueira | Biology
Research interests: Rice (Oryza sativa) is the most widely consumed food for much of the world’s population. Weedy red rice is a conspecific weed and is one of the biggest factors that limits rice production. We are studying the evolution of weedy red rice in different world regions in hopes to understand how to better combat this pest species.
Current projects: My research is focused on population and quantitative genetics. I am interested in how genetic variation is shaped by selection, demography and other evolutionary forces. Currently, there are several research projects underway in the Vigueira lab. Please email me for more details.