Assistant Professor of Biology
Division of Science and Mathematics
Danville, KY 40422
2012-present: Assistant Professor of Biology
Division of Science and Mathematics
2010-2012: Postdoctoral Research Associate
Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology
University of California, Santa Barbara
2004-2010: Ph.D. in Evolutionary Biology
Advisor: Richard G. Harrison (deceased)
1999-2003: B.S. in Evolution and Ecology.
University of California, Davis (summa cum laude).
*Denotes undergraduate co-author.
Nydam, M.L., Giesbrecht, K.B.*, Stephenson, E.E.* 2017a. Origin and dispersal history of two colonial ascidian clades in the Botryllus schlosseri species complex. PLOS ONE 12: e0169944.
Nydam, M.L., Yanckello, L.M.*, Bialik, S.B.*, Giesbrecht, K.B.*, Nation, G.K.*, Peak, J.L.* 2017b. Introgression in two species of broadcast spawning marine invertebrate. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 120: 879-890.
Nydam, M.L., Stephenson, E.E.*, Waldman, C.E.*, De Tomaso, A.W. 2017c. Balancing selection on allorecognition genes in the colonial ascidian Botryllus schlosseri. Developmental and Comparative Immunology 69: 60-74.
Taketa, D.A., Nydam, M.L., Langenbacher, Rodriguez, D., Sanders, E.*, De Tomaso, A.W. 2015. Molecular Evolution and in vitro Characterization of Botryllus histocompatibility factor. Immunogenetics 67: 605-623.
Ilut, D., Nydam, M.L., Hare, M.P. 2014. Defining loci in restriction-based reduced representation genomic data from nonmodel species: Sources of bias and diagnostics for optimal clustering. BioMed Research International doi:10.1155/2014/675158.
Nydam, M.L., Neutschil, N., Sanders, E.*, Langenbacher, A., Lewis, D.L., Marimuthu, A., Gracey, A.Y., De Tomaso, A.W. 2013a. The candidate histocompatibility locus of a basal chordate encodes two highly polymorphic proteins. PLOS ONE. 8: e65980.
Nydam, M.L., Hoang, T.A., Shanley, K.M., De Tomaso, A.W. 2013b. Molecular evolution of a polymorphic HSP40-like protein encoded in the histocompatibility locus of an invertebrate chordate. Developmental and Comparative Immunology 41: 128-136.
Nydam, M.L., Taylor, A.A.*, De Tomaso, A.W. 2013c. Evidence for selection on a chordate histocompatibility locus. Evolution 67: 487-500.
Nydam, M.L., De Tomaso, A.W. 2012. The fester loci in Botryllus schlosseri experience positive selection. BMC Evolutionary Biology 12:249.
Nydam, M.L., De Tomaso, A.W. 2011. Creation and maintenance of variation in allorecognition loci: molecular analysis in various model systems. Frontiers in Molecular Innate Immunity 2: 79.
Nydam, M.L., Harrison, R.G. 2011. Reproductive protein evolution in two cryptic species of marine chordate. BMC Evolutionary Biology 11:18.
Nydam, M.L., Harrison, R.G. 2010a. Polymorphism and divergence within the ascidian genus Ciona. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 56: 718-726.
Nydam, M.L., Harrison, R.G. 2010b. Introgression despite substantial divergence in the ascidian Ciona intestinalis. Evolution 65: 429-442.
Ratcliffe, J.M., Nydam, M.L. 2008. Multimodal warning signals for a multiple predator world. Nature 455: 96-100.
Cabrera, D.A., Mandel, J., Andras, J., Nydam, M.L. 2008. What is the crisis? Defining and addressing the world’s most pressing problems. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 6: 469-475.
Nydam M.L., Harrison R.G. 2007. Genealogical relationships within and among shallow-water Ciona species (Ascidiacea). Marine Biology 151: 1839-1847.
Nydam M.L., Stachowicz J.J. 2007. Predator effects on fouling community development. Marine Ecology Progress Series 337: 93-101.
Rypien, K.L., Anderson, J., Andras, J., Clark, R.W., Gerrish, G.A., Mandel, J.T., Nydam, M.L., Riskin, D.K. 2007. Students unite to create State of the Planet course. Nature 447: 775.
Biology Senior Seminar (Topics: Biology of the Appalachian Mountains, Paleontology, Speciation) Centre College, 2014-2019
Caribbean Ecology in Belize Centre College, 2019
Environmental Effects of Coal Mining Centre College, 2013-2015
Evolution, Biodiversity, Ecology Lecture Centre College, 2014-2019
Evolution, Biodiversity, Ecology Lab Centre College, 2013-2019
Introduction to Genetics Lecture Centre College, 2012-2018
Introduction to Genetics Lab Centre College, 2012-2019
Invertebrate Zoology Lecture Centre College, 2013-2019
Invertebrate Zoology Lab Centre College, 2013-2019
Laboratory Methods in Microbiology Centre College, 2016-2018
Macroevolution Lecture Centre College, 2013-2018
Preparing for a Career in Research Centre College, 2015
Marine Biology Seminar Cornell University, 2009
Speciation Cornell University, 2007
Writing in the Majors Evolution Cornell University, 2006, 2010
Invertebrate Zoology Lab University of California Davis, 2003
Grants and Awards
LUCE Initiative for Asian Studies and the Environment ($3,858)
Faculty Development Committee, Centre College, 2018 ($2,355)
Faculty Development Committee, Centre College, 2017 ($13,580)
NSF KY EPSCoR Research Enhancement Grant, 2016 ($25,000)
Centre Scholar Award, Centre College, 2016 ($10,000)
Stodghill Research Award, Centre College, 2016 (6 months paid leave)
Development Office Gear Up Grant, Centre College, 2016 ($1,500)
Faculty Development Committee, Centre College, 2016 ($2,500)
Faculty Development Committee, Centre College, 2015 ($9,700)
NSF KY EPSCoR Research Scholars Program, 2014 ($8,698)
Faculty Development Committee, Centre College, 2014 ($9,560)
Faculty Development Committee, Centre College, 2013 ($11,328)
Doreen J. Putrah Cancer Research Foundation Conference Fellowship, UCSB, 2011 and 2012 ($1,466)
Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant, NSF, 2009 ($15,000)
Andrew W. Mellon Student Research Grant, Cornell, 2008 ($1,500)
Conference Travel Grant, Graduate School, Cornell, 2007 ($650)
Research Travel Grant, Graduate School, Cornell, 2007 ($2,000)
Lerner Gray Fund for Marine Research, AMNH, 2006 ($1,500)
Summer Research Funding, Dept. of E&EB, Cornell, 2006, 2008 ($1,700)
Cornell Sigma Xi Award, 2005, 2008 ($1,500)
Orenstein Fund Award, Dept. of E&EB, Cornell, 2005 ($500)
Olin Fellowship, Cornell, 2005 ($8,000 + 1 semester tuition)
Wiegand Scholarship, Cornell, 2004 ($8,000 + 1 semester tuition)
NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, 2004 ($90,000 + 3 years’ tuition)
Invited Talks (2010-2018)
“Implementing SEA-PHAGES at Centre College” Kentucky Biomedical Research Infrastructure Network, Bowling Green, KY, 2018
“Speciation and fusion in broadcast spawning marine invertebrates” Department of Biological Sciences, Eastern Kentucky University, Richmond, KY, 2016
“Boundaries in the sea” Kentucky Paleontological Society, Lexington, KY, 2014
“Speciation and fusion in broadcast spawning marine invertebrates” Dept of Entomology, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 2013
“An introduction to the invertebrates” Kentucky Paleontological Society, Lexington, KY, 2013
“Phylogenetic pattern and evolutionary process in the sea” Department of Biology, Siena College, Loudonville, NY, 2012
“Phylogenetic pattern and evolutionary process in the sea” Biology Program, Centre College, Danville, KY, 2012
“Species boundaries in a broadcast spawning marine invertebrate” Biology Department, Augustana College, Rock Island, IL, 2011
“Reproductive barriers in marine invertebrates” Department of Life Sciences, Texas A&M Corpus Christi, Corpus Christi, TX, 2011
“Speciation and fusion in broadcast spawning marine invertebrates” Department of Biology, San Diego State Univ., San Diego, CA, 2011
“Species boundaries in a broadcast spawning marine invertebrate” Cornell Dept. of Ecology and Evol. Biology, Ithaca, NY, 2010
Conference Presentations (2008-2017)
“Species Identification in Botryllid Ascidians” Tunicata Taxonomy Conference, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Bocas del Toro, Panama, 2017
“Allorecognition in Botryllus schlosseri” International Tunicata Conference, New York City, 2017
“Evolution of allorecognition in a colonial marine invertebrate” Society for the Study of Evolution, Austin, TX, 2016
“Evolution of allorecognition in B. schlosseri” Society for the Study of Evolution, Snowbird, UT, 2013
“Evidence for selection on a chordate histocompatibility locus” Kentucky Academy of Sciences, Richmond, KY, 2012
“Evidence for selection on a chordate histocompatibility locus” Society for the Study of Evolution, Ottawa, Canada, 2012
“Positive selection on an allorecognition locus in B schlosseri” 6th International Tunicate Meeting, Montreal, Canada, 2011
“Introgression despite substantial divergence in a broadcast spawner” Western Evolutionary Biologists, Irvine, CA, 2010
“Reproductive isolation in marine broadcast spawners” Western Society of Naturalists, San Diego, CA, 2010
“Multimodal warning signals for a multiple predator world” International Society of Behavioral Ecology, Ithaca, NY, 2008
“Introgression despite substantial divergence in a marine chordate” Society for the Study of Evolution, Minneapolis, MN, 2008
Manuscript Reviewer for Axios, Evolution, Invertebrate Biology, Marine Biology, Molecular Ecology, Molecular Biology and Evolution, PeerJ, Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B, Scientific Reports and Zootaxa
Top Referee Award for Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B
Grant Reviewer for National Science Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant Program
Grant Reviewer for University of Puerto Rico’s Sea Grant Program
Judge at Kentucky Academy of Sciences Meeting
College and Departmental Service (Centre College, 2012-2018)
Tenure and Promotion Task Force (College-wide, Appointed)
Chief Financial Officer Search Committee (College-wide, Appointed)
Curriculum and Academic Standards Committee (College-wide, Elected)
Admissions Committee (College-wide)
Climate Change Committee (College-wide)
Diversity and Community Committee (College-wide)
Faculty and Staff Development Committee (College-wide)
Faculty Retreat Committee (College-wide)
Sustainability Convocation Committee (College-wide)
Undergraduate Research Committee (College-wide)
Secretary, Phi Beta Kappa (College-wide)
Center for Teaching and Learning Advisory Board (College-wide)
College Council Representative (College-wide)
Experiential Learning Advisor, Brown Fellows Program (College-wide)
Fulbright Interview Committee (College-wide)
Pre-Optometry Advisor (College-wide)
Health Professions Advisory Group (College-wide)
Geneticist Search Committee (Two searches, Biology Department)
Paleontologist Search Committee (Two searches, Biology Department)
Ecologist Search Committee (Biology Department)
Dinosaur Presentation and Activity for Lightbulb Learning Camp
Fossil Workshops for the Lexington, KY Girl Scout Council
Judge at Kentucky State Science Fair and Junior Kentucky Academy of Sciences Competition
Marine Biology Career Presentations at Jennie Rogers Elementary School
Marine Biology Career Presentations at Junipero Serra High School