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Eric Keller

Program: Bachelor of Science in Biology/Mathematics
Hometown: Eagle, Alaska
Faculty Mentor: Sherry Tamone (Biology) and Megan Buzby (Mathematics)

Eric was selected for the REU program in 2012 and spent 3 weeks in the Bering Sea sorting trawl catches and working with the on board crab biologist.

  1. Eric has worked in my laboratory for many years and has contributed to the following projects:
  2. Carbohydrate Metabolism in Tanner Crab:  Eric measured trehalose and glucose using biochemical assays and compared these carbohydrates between crabs with different thermal tolerances.
  3. Using PCR to evaluate the prevalence of Bitter Crab Disease in Tanner Crab:  Eric helped develop an efficient PCR assay for evaluating the presence or absence of a dinoflagellate in Tanner crab blood.
  4. Hormonal regulation of molting and differentiation in male Tanner crabs Eric used an ecdysteroid specific  ELISA to quantify molting hormones in hemolymph over the premolt cycle of Tanner crabs.

Eric has participated in the following presentations:

  1. January 3-7 2012: Annual Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. Tamone presented a poster with research contributed by Eric Keller and another undergraduate, Tyler Linderoth.
  2. The effect of eyestalk neurohormones on circulating glucose and trehalose in two species of cold water oregonid crabs. S.L. Tamone*, E. Keller and T. Linderoth. 
  3. January 3-7 2013:  Annual Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology.  Eric presented the following poster on his work on terminal molt in Tanner crab:  Temporal secretion of ecdysteroids over the premolt period in two life history stages of Tanner crabs (Chionoecetes bairdi). EK Keller, LM Ray, and SL Tamone

In his second major, mathematics, Eric is combining his interests in biology and mathematics, researching and developing his own definitions of resilience and considering parameter sensitivity as it pertains to management strategies of (potentially) complex ecosystems, given by a system of differential equations. Resilience can be thought of as a measure for a systems ability to return to some previously defined state (usually an equilibria) after some shift from that state occurs.  From a management perspective, this shift could be thought of as a seasonal harvest allowed by fishermen and the resilience a measure of the system’s ability to return to sustainable levels.  Eric is exploring such definitions and model sensitivity using Monte Carlo techniques.