I am a biology researcher. I have worked primarily on species interactions (host-parasite and plant-insect interactions), population genetics, and phylogenetics. In my research, I have integrated molecular biology approaches, field and laboratory experiments, as well as microscopy and histological techniques.
I earned my Diploma and, later, my Candidate of Science degree in Biological Sciences (2002) at Herzen State University in St. Petersburg, Russia. My dissertation was on cellular immune responses of pulmonate snails to infection by trematodes. Using Biomphalaria glabrata snails and Echinostoma caproni trematode as a model, I explored development of Echinostoma larvae (sporocysts) in B. glabrata snails, and compared hemocytic response to parasitic infection in B. glabrata resistant and susceptible strains.
I earned my Ph.D. in Biological Sciences from the University of Cincinnati in 2014. In my dissertation, I focused on interactions between native and exotic grasses and generalist insect herbivores. Using a grasses-grasshoppers model, I combined behavioral and molecular approaches to explore tolerant and resistant responses of native and exotic grasses to herbivory by Melanoplus grasshoppers, as well as grasshopper feeding preferences on these plants.
In 2016, I did postdoctoral work at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, focusing on biology and distribution of the invasive spotted wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii, in raspberry.
During 2016/2017 academic year I was a Genetics Instructor at Grand View University where I taught upper-level Genetics and Molecular Biology laboratory courses for biotechnology majors.
Currently, I am a Postdoctoral Associate at the Department of Entomology at the University of Maryland. I am working in Dr. Bill Lamp’s lab, where I'm continuing my research on ecology and evolution of plant-insect interactions with a focus on novel associations between native and introduced species.
Current projects: (a) herbivore resistance in Miscanthus sinensis cultivars; (b) plant DNA detection within gut contents in sap-feeding insects; (c) biodiversity of agricultural drainage ditches; (d) plant resistance traits and insect plant host usage (large-scale meta-analysis); and (e) host plant usage of the spotted lanternfly (the grant proposal submitted)
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