Rotation Opportunities presented at the BCB Faculty Seminar

Wednesday, September 7, 2016 - 4:10pm
Event Type: 


Allen Miller

Plant Pathology and Microbiology Department

Area of Expertise: Plant Virology, Insect Viruses, Translation Mechanisms, RNA structure and function


I have always been fascinated by the mechanisms of living things at the cellular and molecular level.  To satisfy this curiosity and to contribute to maintenance of a healthy and sustainable food supply around the world, my lab investigates molecular mechanisms of viruses of agricultural importance.

Recent Publication:

Pollen contaminated with field-relevant levels of cyhalothrin affects honey bee survival, nutritional physiology, and pollen consumption behavior. Dolezal, A.G.; Carrillo-Tripp, J.; Miller, W.A.; Bonning, B.C.; Toth, A.L., Journal of Economic Entomology, Volume 109, p.41-48 (2016).

Keywords: Apis mellifera, honey bee, insecticide, nutrition, sublethal dose


Honey bees are exposed to a variety of environmental factors that impact their health, including nutritional stress, pathogens, and pesticides. In particular, there has been increasing evidence that sublethal exposure to pesticides can cause subtle, yet important effects on honey bee health and behavior. Here, we add to this body of knowledge by presenting data on bee-collected pollen containing sublethal levels of cyhalothrin, a pyrethroid insecticide, which, when fed to young honey bees, resulted in significant changes in lifespan, nutritional physiology, and behavior.

For the first time, we show that when young, nest-aged bees are presented with pollen containing field-relevant levels of cyhalothrin, they reduce their consumption of contaminated pollen. This indicates that, at least for some chemicals, young bees are able to detect contamination in pollen and change their behavioral response, even if the contamination levels do not prevent foraging honey bees from collecting the contaminated pollen.


Eric Ottesen, Postdoctoral Fellow in

Ravi Singh's Lab

Department of Biomedical Sciences



·        Office


I joined Iowa State University as a Ph.D. student in August of 2009, and officially started working in Singh laboratory since June of 2010. During past six years in Singh lab, I have learned a great deal about the mechanisms of RNA-protein interactions, alternative splicing and spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). My research as a graduate student has been focused primarily on the RNA binding characteristics of SMN protein, using the high-throughput methods of SELEX (Systematic Evolution of Ligands through Exponential enrichment) and HITS-CLIP (High-Throughput Sequencing coupled with Crosslinking and Immunoprecipitation). During this time, I also received an education in bioinformatics methods and familiarized myself with common tools for analysis of NGS (Next Generation Sequencing) data. I actively participated in characterization of a novel male reproductive organ phenotype of a mild mouse model of SMA. I am fascinated by progress being made for SMA therapy, particularly through earlier inventions carried out in Singh lab with the generous support of Families of SMA/Cure SMA.