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Emily Taylor

Curriculum Vitae (pdf)
Ph.D. Biology, Arizona State University, 2005
B.A. English, University of California, Berkeley, 1998

Research Interests

I joined Cal Poly in 2005 as an Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences. I oversee PERL and teach several different physiology courses at Cal Poly. I have a profound love for the animals I study and enjoy nothing more than training students in research techniques in environmental physiology of reptiles. Before coming to Cal Poly I chased rattlesnakes around the Sonoran Desert for six years while doing my dissertation in the laboratory of Dale DeNardo in the School of Life Sciences at Arizona State University. Prior to that I was an undergraduate student and curatorial assistant in the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology at the University of California at Berkeley.

Current Research

Research in PERL examines reproductive physiology and physiological trade-offs in reptiles. In particular, much of our research revolves around testosterone, a potent androgen that stimulates the expression of male-typical behaviors and physiological responses, often resulting in a major re-direction of energy toward these responses. For example, during breeding seasons, increases in testosterone concentrations may cause male reptiles to expend more energy on movement, territory guarding, and mate-searching and defense. The negative energy balance induced by testosterone during breeding seasons may affect immune function, growth, fat reserves, and other factors. We are particularly interested in measuring immune function as it pertains to parasitism. Our research seeks to understand these trade-offs in reptiles in laboratory and field settings.

Current research projects include:
1. Effects of host physiological condition on ectoparasite loads and feeding rates of Western fence lizards(Sceloporus occidentalis)
2. Spatial ecology, hormones, reproduction, neuroplasticity, and stress physiology of Northern Pacific rattlesnakes (Crotalus o. oreganus)
3. Stress physiology in Hog Island Boas (Boa constrictor imperator)

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Last Update: December 10, 2013

California Polytechnic State University
College of Science & Mathematics
Department of Biological Sciences
San Luis Obispo, CA 93407-0401
Phone: 805.756.2616

Email: etaylor@calpoly.edu