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What we study

Our research focuses on the ecology and evolution of symbiotic associations between animals and microbes. We utilize a cross-disciplinary approach incorporating ecological, evolutionary, behavioral, genetic, and microbiological approaches and employ molecular ecology and phylogenetic techniques to examine how microbes shape the biology of higher organisms. Our main study system is the quadripartite association between fungus-growing ants, their fungal cultivars, mutualistic bacteria, and specialized garden pathogens. sheep

Recent News!

  •   The lab said farewell to two great people! Good luck to Frank Aylward and Amy Cavanaugh!

  •   Senator Tammy Baldwin visited the lab! Check it out!

  • Dr. Alissa Hanshew defended her thesis! Great work!

  • Dr. Kirk Grubbs defended his thesis. Congrats Kirk!

  • Congratulations to Dr. Frank Aylward on successfully defending his thesis!

  • Cameron saw Will Smith while he was field collecting in Costa Rica! Who knew Will Smith liked leaf-cutters too?

  • The Ant-Cam is up and running! Watch our Atta cephalotes display colony in real-time as they maintain their garden and integrate leaf material! You can also follow the colony on Twitter!

  • The Leaf-Cutter Ants have officially moved into their new exhibit in the Microbe Place in the Microbial Sciences Building!

  • Cameron received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers!!!


6145 Microbial Sciences Building | 1550 Linden Drive | Madison, WI 53706 | Phone: (608) 890-0237

© Joseph Moeller 2010