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Kennedy Lab - Fall 2016

Peter Kennedy

Associate Professor
Principal Investigator

Department of Plant Biology & Ecology, Evolution and Behavior
University of Minnesota
1479 Gortner Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55108

office: 810 Biological Sciences
phone: 612-624-8519
email: kennedyp@umn.edu


Lauren Cline

Postdoctoral Associate

Department of Plant Biology
University of Minnesota
808 Biological Science Center
1479 Gortner Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55108


office: 808 Biological Sciences
phone: 612-625-5438
email:clinela@umn.edu


Chris Fernandez

Postdoctoral Associate

Department of Plant Biology
University of Minnesota
1479 Gortner Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55108
office: 808 Biological Sciences
phone: 612-625-5438
email:


Lotus Lofgren

Graduate Student

Plant Biological Sciences Graduate Program
University of Minnesota
250 Biological Science Center
1445 Gortner Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55108
office: 810 Biological Sciences
email: lofgr080@umn.edu
website: www.lotuslofgren.com


Craig See

Graduate Student

Ecology Evolution and Behavior Graduate Program
University of Minnesota
1987 Upper Buford Circle
St. Paul, MN 55108
office: 503 Ecology
email: crsee@umn.edu


Amanda Certano

Lab Technician

Department of Plant Biology
University of Minnesota
1479 Gortner Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55108
office: 810 Biological Sciences

email:


Dr. Luke McCormack

Visiting Scholar

Department of Plant Biology
University of Minnesota
1479 Gortner Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55108

office: 804 Biological Sciences
email:
website: www.mlmccormack.com

 


Undergraduate Researchers

Erin Andrews

Erin joined the lab as a volunteer in spring 2016 and worked with Chris Fernandez on generating mycorrhizal biomass and building litter bags for the 2016 field season at Cedar Creek and the Marcell Experimental Forest. In 2017, she won a UROP to conduct her own research on fungal necromass decomposition across the forest-grassland border at Cedar Creek.  She also worked with Lauren Cline generating isotope data from Bell herbarium samples in summer 2017.

Emily Schommer

Emily joined the lab as a volunteer in spring 2017 and worked with Lotus Lofgren examining spore germination capacity in Suillus with compatible and non-compatible hosts.  She is doing a directed research project on the same topic in fall 2017 and applying to medical school.


Previous Lab Members

Sam Willard

Sam worked with Craig See characterizing arbuscular mycorrhizal colonization of Helianthemum plants.  In summer 2017, he did a bunch of scouting of possible field sites at Itasca.

Obi Wamuo

Obi joined the lab from the University of Chicago, where is an undegraduate student majoring in biology.  He was involved in all kinds of projects over the summer from trialing the DADA2 pipeline to HTS library prep of tropical forest soils from Puerto Rico, Colombia, Mexico, and Costa Rica. 

Caroline Daws

Caroline joined the lab in fall 2016 for a great year as an EEB graduate student. She returned to Stanford in fall 2017 to work on her Ph.D. with Kabir Peay. While at UMN, she worked on examining the fungal and bacterial communities in soils from Scientific and Natural Areas across the state of Minnesota.

Ying Han

Ying was a visiting professor from China who worked in the lab for 18 months. She helped on many projects, including the B4Warmed ectomycorrhizal fungal study, the Quercus root common garden study, and the Larix-Ledum-Picea study.  

Alex Tang

Alex is an undergraduate genetics major with a passion for fungi.  He worked with Lauren Cline in spring 2016 on a variety of lab projects ranging from microcosm construction to soil core DNA extraction.  He is currently applying to medical school.

Eva Carlson

Eva joined the lab in fall 2015 and worked with Luke McCormack and Matt Kaproth (Cavender-Bares lab) on a project examining changes in root traits across a broad suite of temperate and tropical Quercus seedlings.  She was awarded a UROP award to conduct this work and is applying to pharmacy school.

Louis Mielke

Louis joined the lab in spring 2015 as a UROP student.  His initial research focused on the effects of Ledum (Rhododendron) groenlandicum on the germination of ectomycorrhizal tree seedlings.  In spring 2016, he worked on a project examining changes in ectomycorrhizal and ericoid fungal communities in a greenhouse experiment including Larix laricina, Picea mariana, and Ledum groenlandicum.  He is currently spending time in northern Minnesota and gearing up for grad school.

Nhu Nguyen

Nhu was the first post-doc in the lab and got all kinds of research going at UMN, particularly using HTS techniques to characterize fungal communities.  He also generated a diverse fungal culture collection, with a bias towards one of his favorite fungal genera, Suillus. After his time in Minnesota, he was a post-doc in Mary Firestone's lab at UC Berkeley and then became an assistant professor in the Department of Tropical Plant and Soil Sciences at the University of Hawaii in fall 2016.

Julia Higgins

Julia the first tech in the lab at UMN and was also an undergraduate student with Peter at Lewis & Clark College.  She was involved in lots of different projects, with the majority focusing on some aspect of the chemistry in involved in mycorrhizal ecology.  Her undergraduate thesis on Alnus-Frankia-ECM interactions was published in 2014 in Fungal Ecology.  She is currently a Ph.D. student at the University of British Colombia studying microbial ecology and spending lots of time outdoors.

Natalie Pierson

Natalie volunteered in the lab as an undergraduate student in 2013, learning a range of basic lab research techniques.  In particular, she constructed lots of the in-growth bags used to look at ectomycorrhizal fungal communities across nitrogen gradients at Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve.

Blake Boeing

Blake worked on sequencing mushroom specimens from various habitats in Minnesota in 2013-2014 as an undergraduate student. The data generated will be used to match environmental DNA sequences to named specimens, a crucial step to better understanding fungal community ecology.

Cher Ling Tong

Cher joined the lab as an HHMI undergraduate research student in 2015. She learned how to prepare a high throughput sequencing library of bog fungi associated with roots of ectomycorrhizal trees and ericaceous shrubs. She presented a poster on the topic in spring 2015.

Waogwende Léonce Song Naba

Léonce joined the lab as an HHMI undergraduate research student in 2015. He did a directed research and presented poster on connecting the hyphal presence below ground to mushroom presence aboveground in spring 2015.

Abigail Awode

Abigail joined the lab as a directed study student study in fall 2015.  She worked with Julia Huggins on a project exploring the effects of different nitrogen sources (organic vs. inorganic) on the growth a suite of ectomycorrhizal Paxillus species.

Adam Busacker

Adam joined the lab as a volunteer in summer 2015 and worked with Chris Fernandez examining litter decomposition and fungal fruitbody production in a field experiment at Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve.  He also worked with Julia Huggins exploring the chemical nature of competition among ectomycorrhizal and saprotrophic fungi in fall 2015.

Andrea Nelson

Andrea joined the lab as a volunteer in summer 2015 and stayed on as a directed research student in fall 2015.  She has worked on characterizing the nature of chemical interactions among ectomycorrhizal fungi when growing in pure culture settings.