Department of Biological Science

FSU researcher: Ocean acidification means major changes for California mussels

Accelerating ocean acidification could be transforming the fundamental structure of California mussel shells, according to a new report from a Florida State University-led team of scientists. For thousands of years, California mussel shells have shared a relatively uniform mineralogical makeup — long, cylindrical calcite crystals ordered in neat vertical rows with crisp, geometric regularity. But […]

Researchers first to unlock key molecular mystery of premature aging syndromes

New research from Florida State University is beginning to piece together the stubborn puzzle posed by a family of rare and debilitating premature aging disorders. Most of these diseases, called progeroid syndromes, share physiological symptoms characterized by the appearance of accelerated aging, such as skin disorders, loss of hair, skeletal and dental abnormalities and cardiovascular […]

Rival sperm and choosy eggs: FSU researcher finds that when sperm compete, eggs have a choice

The delicately mannered dance between discerning eggs and vying sperm is more complicated than scientists once believed, and it may hold secrets about the evolution of new species. In a paper published in the journal American Naturalist, Florida State University Chair and Professor of Biological Science Don Levitan investigates a root mystery in our scientific […]

Researcher reveals how beetles bounce back from forest fires

For decades, forestry services have used prescribed burns to promote ecological resilience in areas vulnerable to wildfires. Now, research from Florida State University has illuminated the piecemeal patterns of recolonization among a hardy species of beetle regularly affected by these managed burns. Using herbivorous tortoise beetle populations in Florida’s Apalachicola National Forest — where management […]