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  • Cawa Tran

    Cawa Tran

    Postdoctoral Research fellow, Genetics

    Current Research and Scholarly Interests The key to understanding mechanisms that mediate cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbioses is to do experiments that target functional questions. With my background and training in developmental and larval biology, along with the lab group’s success of inducing Aiptasia to spawn in the lab, I see great opportunities to look at larvae and their specificity with certain strains of Symbiodinium and how might that progress through settlement and metamorphosis. Analysis of the transcriptomic changes between symbiotic and aposymbiotic larvae, and when larvae are exposed to different symbiont types, would provide immense information on specificity that could be different from the specificity seen at the adult stage. This study will contribute to our understanding of coral-dinoflagellate symbiosis in relation to early life history and physiology. I was previously trained at the Kewalo Marine Laboratory in Honolulu and received my Ph.D. from the University of Hawaii. Prior to that, I obtained a B.A. in Integrative Biology from UC Berkeley. A native of San Diego and a lover of both the Pacific and the Bay Area, I greatly enjoy the outdoors, the ocean, the arts, and I do creative writing on the side.

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