Nicholls Student Researchers Attend the ULL Fall Undergraduate Research Invitational

Dr. Gary LaFleur brought four Nicholls Biology undergraduate students to the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Fall Undergraduate Research Invitational.  Each student gave a presentation on their research.  The students, coauthors, and research presentation titles are:

Angelle Aubin, A Corbin, and M Kilgen.  A Case Study of a Vibrio Outbreak in a Shrimp Aquaculture (poster presentation).

Elizabeth Bergeron, K Holloway, and K Pruitt.  Sirtuin and Disheveled proteins as regulators of aromatase expression in breast cancer cell line McF-7 (poster presentation).

Meredith McKoin and Earl Melancon.  The Prevalence of Three Grass Shrimp Species in a Louisiana Estuary and the Intensity of Infection by the Ectoparasite, Probopyrus pandalicola, on the Grass Shrimp, Paleomonetes pugio (oral presentation).

Mingma Sherpa, B Zybailov, K Raney, G Glazko.  Quadruplexes in Mitochondrial DNA- Structure, Function and Evolution (poster and oral presentation).

Award Winning Faculty

Dr. Gary LaFleur, associate professor in Biological Sciences, was just awarded the 2012 Nicholls State University Presidential Award for Teaching Excellence.  This award is the highest honor a teacher at Nicholls State Univeristy can receive.

Dr. Ramaraj Boopathy and Dr. Earl Melancon were both recently named Alcee Fortier Distinguished Service Professors, which is the highest award that can be bestowed on a faculty at Nicholls State University.

Newly retired Alex Lasseigne has just been named Professor Emeritus of Biological Sciences.  He will continue to manage the Nicholls Herbarium.

Undergraduate Students Receive Research Grants

Three of our undergraduate students have recently been awarded research grants by Louisiana Sea Grant through their Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP).  The students and their grant titles are:

Shiena Normand:  Comparison of Sensitivity of EROD activity to PAHs between Two Beach Burrowers.

Ian Denys:  Assessment of Oxidative Damages to the Gulf Killifish, Fundulus grandis, by the Weathered BP Oil.

Kate Hotard: Is Ethoxyresorufin O-deethylase Activity in the Hepatopancreas of the Fiddler Crab, Uca pugilator, Influenced by the Molting Physiology?


Two of our undergraduate students have recently been awarded research grants by the Louisiana Board of Regents through their Supervised Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) program.  The students and their grant titles are:

Lillian Barber:  Biocontrol of Vibrio Species in Shrimp Aquaculture with Host Specific Lytic Bacteriophage

Angelle Aubin:  Charcaterization of Lytic Bacteriophage for Control of Vibrio Pathogens

Prize Winning Students

Several of our undergraduate and graduate students present their research findings at professional conferences at the state, region, and national level.  Many of our students have recently placed in student competitions:

Aimee Hafkesbring won 2nd Place in the poster competition at the Louisiana Association of Professional Biologists/The Wildlife Society Louisiana Chapter 2012 Fall Symposium for her poster titled:  Growth of smooth cordgrass in the presence and absence of fiddler crabs.

Emily Rombach won 2nd Place Best Student Presentation at the Louisiana Chapter of the American Fisheries Society 2012 Annual Meeting for her presentation titled:  Physiological reproductive seasonality of spotted gar, Lepisosteus oculatus, in the upper Barataria Estuary, Louisiana.

David Samaha won the Best Undergraduate Oral Presentation in Environmental Science at the 2012AcademyofSciences Meetingfor his presentation titled Fuel Grade Ethanol Production fromEastern Gamagrass.

Bijeta Prasai won the Best Undergraduate Oral Presentation in Microbiology at the 2012AcademyofSciences Meetingfor her presentation titled Use of White Rot and Brown Rot Fungi in Lignin Removal from Sugarcane Residue for Bio-ethanol Production.

Derek Adams won the Best Graduate Student Oral Presentation in Microbiology at the 2012 Academyof Sciences Meetingfor his presentation titled Effects of Formic Acid on Shrimp Aquaculture Pathogens, Vibrio Spp.

Lisa Breaux won 2nd Place Best Student Presentation at the Society of Wetland Scientists South Central Chapter 2011 Fall Meeting for her presentation titled Effect of salt acclimation on growth and survival of Spartina alterniflora.