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Dr. Kattia Palacio-Lopez

Dr. Kattia Palacio-Lopez

Dr. Kattia Palacio-Lopez

Assistant Professor - Department Natural ScienceNatural Sciences
STB 228


I received my Ph.D. from University of Vermont under a Fulbright Scholarship, my MSc from Universidad de Concepción, Chile and my Bachelor from Universidad Industrial de Santander, Colombia, where I am from. An important component of my educational training and research focus was my experience as a Postdoctoral research scholar in three different institutions. First, at Purdue University I worked on the genetic basis of fitness tradeoffs across environments. At Skidmore College I worked in a collaborative NSF funded project with Cornell University using model charophyte, Penium margaritaceum, to elucidate subcellular responses to stress that were key in the evolution of land plants. Lastly, at The Ohio State University, I was enrolled on research projects about phenotypic plasticity and its implications for colonization and invasion success in plants using two model systems: (i) a diverse and global collection of Arabidopsis thaliana natural accessions and (ii) native and non-native wetland plants that tend towards ecological dominance.

Degrees Earned

B.Sc., Biology, Universidad Industrial de Santander, Bucaramanga, Colombia

M.Sc., Botany, Universidad de Concepción, Concepción, Chile

Ph.D., Plant Biology, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT, United States.

Courses Taught

Plant Biology (3330)

General Biology (BIOL 1101)

Experience Qualifications

Universidad Industrial de Santander (Colombia). Adjunct Professor. Course: Eco-physiology. 2021. Biology for Engineers 2011-2012.

The Ohio State University: Postdoctoral Research Associate 2019-2020.

Skidmore College: Postdoctoral Research Associate. 2018-2019.

Purdue University: Postdoctoral Research Associate. 2017-2018.

University of Vermont (United States). Teaching Assistant. Course: Ecology and Evolution. 2014-2017.

More Information

My research area is evolutionary ecology, specifically focusing on the importance of phenotypic plasticity and hybridization in plant evolution and invasion biology using Arabidopsis thaliana as a model system. My studies have been done under growth chambers, greenhouse, and long-term plots in the field. I use a wide range of quantitative methods, including meta-analyses, multivariate statistics and generalized linear mixed models to measure the strength of natural selection and evolutionary potential in functional traits. I also make use of molecular ecology techniques, bioinformatics and phenotyping procedures to establish genotype-phenotype associations.

I am interested in biodiversity and the role of abiotic factors driving both genetic and plastic variation in plant traits, spanning evolutionary and ecological scales. My research focus at the frontiers of an ecological and evolutionary understanding of mechanisms that influence plant adaptation to rapidly changing environments.

Palacio-Lopez, K., Hovick, S., Mattingly,M., Weston, L., Hofford, N., Finley, L., Reinartz, J. A. Suppression of Reed Canary Grass (Phalaris arundinacea) by Assisted Succession: a 16- Year Restoration Experiment. (In prep. for Journal of Applied Ecology).

Palacio-Lopez, K., Molofsky, J. 2021. Phenotypic shifts following admixture in recombinant offspring of Arabidopsis thaliana. Evolutionary Ecology. 35: 575-593.

Domozych, D.S., Sun, L., Palacio-Lopez, K. 2021. The effects of osmotic stress on the cell wall-plasma membrane domains of the unicellular streptophyte, Penium margaritaceum. Protoplasma. 258: 1231-1249.

Palacio-Lopez, K., King, C., Bloomberg, J., Hovick, S. 2020. Natural selection on traits and trait plasticity in Arabidopsis thaliana varies across competitive environments. Scientific Reports. 10: 21632.

Palacio-Lopez, K., Sun, L., Reed, R., Kang, E., Kreinik, J., Sørensen, I., Mravec, J., Rose, J., Domozych, D.S. 2020. Experimental manipulation of pectin topology in the cell wall of the unicellular charophyte, Penium margaritaceum. Front Plant Science. 11: 1032.

Jiao, C., Sørensen, I., Sun,X., Behar, H., Alseekh, S., Philippe, G., Palacio-Lopez, K., Sun, L., Reed, R., Jeon, S., Kiyonami, R., Zhang, S., Fernie, A., Brumer, H., Domozych, D.S., Fei, Z., Rose, J. 2020. The Penium margaritaceum genome: Hallmarks of the origins of land plants. Cell. 181: 1-15.

Domozych, D.S., Sun, L., Palacio-Lopez, K., Reed R., Jeon, S., Kiyonami, R., Li, M., Jiao,C., Sørensen, I., Fei, Z., Rose, J. 2020. Endomembrane architecture and dynamics during secretion of the extracellular matrix of the unicellular charophyte, Penium margaritaceum. Journal of Experimental Botany. eraa039.

Palacio-Lopez, K., Tinaz, B., Holzinger, A., Domozych, D.S. 2019. Arabinogalactan proteins and the extracellular matrix of charophytes: A sticky business. Front Plant Science.10: 447.

Palacio-Lopez, K., Keller, S.R., Molofsky, J. 2018. Genomic admixture between locally adapted populations of Arabidopsis thaliana: Evidence of optimal genetic outcrossing distance. Journal of Heredity. 109: 38-46.

Palacio-Lopez, K., Preston, J., Molofsky, J. 2017. High temperature-induced plasticity and its genetic pathway in wild ecotypes of Arabidopsis thaliana. International Journal of Plant Sciences. 178: 680-688.

Palacio-Lopez, K., Beckage, B., Scheiner, S., Molofsky, J. 2015.The ubiquity of phenotypic plasticity in plants: a synthesis. Ecology and Evolution. 5: 3389-3400.

Palacio-Lopez, K., Gianoli, E. 2011. Invasive plants do not display greater phenotypic plasticity than their native or non-invasive counterparts: A meta-analysis. Oikos. 120: 1393-1401.

Gianoli, E., Palacio-Lopez, K. 2009. Phenotypic integration may constrain phenotypic plasticity in plants. Oikos. 118: 1924-1928.

Palacio-Lopez, K., Rodríguez, N. 2008. Plasticidad fenotípica en Lippia alba (Verbenaceae) en respuesta a la disponibilidad hídrica en dos ambientes lumínicos. Acta Biológica Colombiana. 12: 187-198.

  • Fulbright scholarship for Ph.D.
  • Comisión Nacional de Investigación Científica y Tecnológica de Chile (Conicyt) scholarship for M.Sc.
  • Honor Student in the School of Biology. Universidad Industrial de Santander. Colombia.