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Nathan T. Mortimer
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​​Lab News

Alumni Update - Victoria DeMichel

Congratulations to lab alum Victoria DeMichel on her new position with Edward-Elmhurst Health! Best of luck in this exciting new opportunity!  

First M.S. Awarded

Congratulations to Pooja for becoming the first student from the lab to complete her M.S.! Now we will work on getting Pooja's thesis project published in the coming months. In related news, congratulations to Pooja for becoming the lab's first Ph.D. student. We are very excited that Pooja will be with us for a few more years!

              Pooja Graduation

              Pooja with Rachel and Ashley

Congratulations Basheer!

Some very exciting news, Basheer Becerra has been named a 2018-2019 Bone Scholar. The Bone Scholarship is the highest award given to Illinois State University students, so we are all very excited for Basheer. You can read more about it here​.

New Collaboration with the Mennonite College of Nursing

We have just begun an exciting new project with Dr. Susana Calderon, Assistant Professor of Nursing, and Maria Castiblanco, an undergraduate nursing student, looking at links between microbiota and oral health.
Susana and Maria working in the lab 

Mary is Heading to Med School!

Congratulations to Mary, who has been accepted to the University of Kansas Medical School! 

New Graduate Student for Fall 2018

This Fall Eva Gunawan will be joining the lab as a student in the M.S. program. Welcome Eva!

Alumni Update - Joel Wheeler

Joel is currently working on his M.S. in the Molecular Biology Department at Southern Illinois University. His research there is focused on studying mitochondrial toxicity in human cell lines. Joel was one of the first students to join in the lab, so it is really exciting to see his success!

Congratulations Graduates!

Congrats to Kaitie, Nick, Doug, Tiger, Senam and Victoria: Illinois State University Class of 2018!

             Tiger at Graduation

             Pooja and Doug before graduation

             The group after graduation

             Pooja, Brie and Rosario after graduation

​Honors Thesis Defense  


Victoria successfully defended her Honors Thesis and will graduate with honors. Victoria's project focused on the role of immune receptors in autoimmunity in Drosophila, and was presented at the 2017 Phi Sigma Research Symposium and the University Research Symposium. Congrats Victoria!

​Phi Sigma Spring Banquet

Phi Sigma held their annual Spring Banquet at Reality on Monroe in downtown Bloomington. It was a very successful event and we all had a great time. Congrats to Ashley and Chris for winning TA awards, and to Nate for being named Outstanding Mockford/Thompson Reviewer.

Pooja and Ashley at the Banquet

​2018 Phi Sigma Research Symposium

Emma, Josh, Ashley and Pooja all presented posters at this year's Phi Sigma Research Symposium. Pooja won 1st place in the poster competition!
 Ashley presenting her poster
 Pooja at Phi Sigma
Emma presenting her poster

Summer at CSHL

Basheer has been accepted into the Bioinformatics and Computational Biology summer research program at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. Congratulations Basheer, it sounds like a great way to spend the summer!

​ANNA Research Grant

Great news for our collaborators SeonYoon Chung in the Mennonite College of Nursing and Jennifer Barnes in the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences​. They have been awarded a Research Grant from the American Nephrology Nurses Association, and we are excited to help out with the bioinformatic analysis.

Major Research Instrumentation Grant from NSF

Nate was part of a group, along with PI Laura Vogel and fellow co-PIs Rachel Bowden and Ben Sadd, that was awarded an MRI Grant from NSF to purchase a high-speed fluorescence activated cell sorter. Read more about it here and here.

FlyCAGE in the Spotlight

The InterMine blog recently interviewed Basheer about his work developing FlyCAGE, a new bioinformatics tool for analyzing correlation of gene expression. Read all about it here. We are also looking for usage testers ahead of the big launch, so if you are interested please get in touch.

Congratulations Mary!

Mary successfully defended her honors thesis entitled ​"Developing an In vitro Assay for Analyzing Jak-Stat Pathway Activity in Drosophila" and graduated with honors at the December graduation ceremony. Now she's off for a great study abroad experience in Mexico!

​​2017 Midwest Drosophila Conference

Several members of the lab traveled to Monticello, IL for the 2017 Midwest Drosophila Conference. Kaitie gave a talk on her collaborative project with the Vrailas Mortimer lab, and Josh, Chris, Pooja and Ashley all presented posters on their research.
Josh presenting at the Midwest Drosophila Conference
Chris presenting his poster
Pooja at the conference
Ashley presenting her poster

2017 Biomathematics Symposium

The 2017 International Symposium on Biomathematics and Ecology Education and Research (BEER) was held at Illinois State University, and Nate organized a Genomics and Bioinformatics Mini-symposium as part of the conference. Basheer (FlyCAGE) and Nate (Wasp Venom Genomics) both gave talks highlighting the Bioinformatics research going on in the lab.
Basheer presenting at BEER

​GEP Paper Published in G3

The latest paper from the Genomics Education Partnership has been published in ​G3: Genes, Genomics, Genetics. Give it a read.​ 

​Congratulations Graduates!

Congrats to Alec and Danny: Illinois State University Class of 2017!
Danny, Nate and Alec

​Bone Scholar!

Congratulations to Mary, who has been named a 2017-2018 Robert G. Bone Scholar! The Bone Scholarship is the highest award given to undergraduate students at Illinois State University, and we are proud of Mary, a very deserving recipient of this honor! Read more about it here.

​Mockford/Thompson Fellowship

Congratulations to Ashley, who has been awarded a Mockford/Thompson Summer Fellowship. This highly competitive award will support Ashley's research during the summer.

XSEDE Allocation

Nate has been awarded a resource allocation grant from the NSF-funded Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment. This allocation will support our work on parasitoid wasp genome assembly and annotation.

Crowd-Sourcing Big Data with Undergraduates

Our review paper describing the Genomics Education Partnership program has been published in Trends in Genetics. Check it out.

​​Plant and Animal Genomes Conference

Nate traveled to San Diego for the Plant and Animal Genomes Conference to present a poster on work done by BSC 354 students, and to co-present a poster from GEP. It was tough to leave Central IL for San Diego in January!
Working by the pool in San Diego

​Congratulations Jordann!

Congratulations to Jordann, who graduated in the Winter ceremony!



​2016 Midwest Drosophila Conference 

Ashley, Josh, Jordann, Brooklynne and Xavier all presented their research at the 2016 Midwest Drosophila Conference. Xavier received​ a Student Travel Award from the Council on Undergraduate Research to support his travel.
Josh and Jordann
Xavier and Brooklynne
Ashley and Jordann

​Illinois State University BSSA Symposium

The Illinois State Biological Sciences Student Association held their first Research Symposium. Jordann and Ashley presented posters.
Jordann presenting her poster

​NACI Presentation

Nate gave a talk at the North American Comparative Immunology Workshop in Charlottetown, PEI. He had a great time at the meeting (and the lobster wasn't bad either!).
University of Prince Edward Island

Congratulations Graduates!

​​​​​​​​​Congratulations to Joel Wheeler and Taylor McGee. The first two lab alumni!