Current Research

My master’s thesis project is on color vision in ruffed lemurs (Varecia spp.) with Dr. Andrea Baden. My research project will be conducted at the Duke Lemur Center in Durham, North Carolina, where I will be training and running behavioral trials. Using multi-field approaches, I am trying to answer my research questions by incorporating computer programming, robotics, psychophysics, and animal training.  I built a subject-mediated automatic remote testing apparatus (SMARTA) to test the Varecia spp. that I will train subjects to use before running trials to test whether they can perceive and discriminate the color red. I will also take blood samples from my subjects to extract genomic DNA for genetic analyses in the Primate Molecular Ecology Lab (PMEL) at Hunter College. I hope that this research can further elucidate whether color vision genotypes in Varecia spp. are expressed phenotypically.