Hartline-Lenz-Castelfranco Lab Opportunities

(Updated November 2021)

Blow are general descriptions of employmentt and/or training opportunities in the lab. Please contact the person indicated for the latest information.

Areas of opportunity:

Three P.I.'s, Petra Lenz (Lab pages) , Ann Castelfranco, and Dan Hartline (Lab pages) , form a collaborative research group with position opportunities from time to time in several areas (email user names in the list below are all "at pbrc dot hawaii dot edu"). THe first two areas, focused on copepods in the Gulf of Alaska, are the ones with most current opportunities:

Opportunities for undergraduate student trainees open most frequently, owing to graduation-generated vacancies. For motivated students with experience in the lab and time available, these can lead to employent. Interdisciplinary work bridging areas is also possible. As with much federally-funded basic research, long-term employment cannot (unfortunately) be guaranteed. Positions are funded through the periodic competitive research grant application process. We welcome inquiries regarding current opportunities as well as those that would develop additional collaborative funded proposals for work in our areas of interest.

Post-baccalaureate Trainees

General information: Our research projects cover a range of topics involving the ecophysiology of marine crustaceans, especially calanoid copepods. We currently work on both warm-water species available in Hawaii (including copepods in long-term cultures), and cold water copepod species from the Gulf of Alaska. Approaches include molecular (transcriptomics and bioinformatics), respirometric, morphological (immunohistochemistry, confocal and electron microscopy) and electrophysiological ones, applied to problems in population cycles (diapause), predator-prey interactions and other aspects of marine crustacean behavioral and physiological ecology. Some projects extend more broadly to decapod crustaceans of Puget Sound and Gulf of Maine and to insect model systems (Andy Christie).

Mechanics: We accept graduate students through the Graduate Program of the Department of Zoology (Hartline, Lenz), the Oceanography Department (Lenz), and the Marine Biology Program (Lenz). Support on TAships is available (competitively) for incoming Zoology students. Grant support for students working on thesis research needs to be arranged in advance, and inquiry should be made about future prospects when you contact the lab. The departments grant both Masters and PhD degrees (see Zoology program; Zoology application deadline is December 15 of each year: click for application information). At times we are able to host internships for graduate students from other universities if they are at least partially supported by the home institution. Owing to costly UH and granting-agency policy changes, Postdoctoral candidates are strongly encouraged to submit applications for their own support in collaboration with one of the faculty here.

Contact: Petra Lenz for general inquiries.


Copepod ecophysiology: A project focused on the annual lifecycle of calanid copepods, which migrate to deep waters (>400m) followed by dormancy during the summer in the Gulf of Alaska. In the winter to early spring they reporduce, with different species on somewhat different schedules. The project aims are to understand the physiology underlying the different phases of preparing for, entering and emerging from dormancy, the growth of the offspring, and the susceptibiliy of their populations to perturbation, including those predicted to result from global climate change. The ork involves a combination of transcriptomics, morphometry, respirometry and fluorescent tagging as well as oceanographic cruises with ship-board sampling on the Seward Line and experiments. For information, contact Petra Lenz.

2. Undergraduate Students

We welcome motivated undergraduates interested in hands-on research experience related to the projects in our lab. There are currently five avenues for such experience:

Representative undergraduate projects:

  1. Photosensory behavior Directed research course projects on responsiveness of copepods and fish (extension of recent projects):
    1. Copepod phototactic behavior
    2. Copepod circadian rhythmicity
  2. Transcriptomics as an ecophysiological tool: Mining copepod (and other arthropod) transcriptomic and genomic databases. Assesing experimentally-incuded gene expression changes.
  3. Other copepod-related projects
    1. Copepod respiration
    2. "Bar coding" Hawaii copepods and other crustacean plankters; establishing geographic distributions of haplotypes
    3. Copepod escape behavior: Behavioral studies of escape reactions of developmental stages of copepods.
  4. Modeling projects
    1. Hydrodynamics of copepod swimming
    2. Conduction of nerve impulses in myelinated axons

    Foreign students: We are open to applications from students in study-abroad programs. Visas and financial support are always an issue, but these problems vary on an individual basis. We have had some success with such programs, but the initial arrangements must usually be made by the student. An EXCELLENT command of written and spoken English is essential.

    3. High-school Students

    We accept well-qualified high-school students to undertake special projects in our area of expertise, for example related to the Hawaii State Science and Engineering Fair. Prospective students need to present a well-organized plan for the research they would conduct in the lab, including what sort of problem(s) they would like to pursue, how they would go about it and how much time they have to spend on it. Projects should start no later than early fall for March State Science Fair presentations (school and regional fairs are usually January/February).

    Contact: Dan Hartline

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