• Adolescent fears and anxities:a comparitive analysis of parent's and teacher's perceptions of adolescent differences.

      Milner, Carolyn.B (2012-04-13)
      The purpose of the study were 1)to compare parents and teachers and students perceptions of student's fears and anxities and 2)to determine if there were differences in student's fears and anxieties based on grade level or gender.This study was quantitative in nature.Four hundred eighty-six middle school students in a five through eight configuration, and their parents and teachers were included in the sample.Two surveys were given:The Middle Level Survey was created by the researcher, and the Comprehensive Assessment of School Climate is a National Study of School Evaluation(NSSE) product created by kelley,Glover,Keefe,Halderson,Sorenson,and Speth(1986).Statistical analysis of the data included the one-way ANOVA,Tukey's HSD and descriptive statistics.This study investigated the perceptions of parents and teachers about the anxiety and fears of adolescents in grades 5,6,7 and 8 and how parent's and teacher's perceptions are related to the perceptions of adolescents.Grade level and gender were disagreegated.Three areas were adressed:School Environment/Safety,Support for Learning, and Quality/Social Relationships.Parents and teachers held a greater perception of Environment/Safety than did students.Parents and teachers also recognized a more positive climate with Support for Learning than did students, and were more positive than students with their perceptions regarding Quality/Social Relationships(i.e,higher score indicating a more positive perception).Students in Grade 8 noted more concerns in all three areas than students in grade 5,6 or 7.No significance difference was noted between males and females had a more positive perception than did males.
    • Adult Survivorship and Juvenile Recruitment in Populations of Crawfish Frogs (Lithobates Areolatus), with Additional Consideration of the Population Sizes of Associated Pond Breeding Species

      Kinney, Vanessa C. (2011-07-19)
      Crawfish Frog populations have declined significantly in both the northeastern and southwestern portions of their range, and are listed as state endangered in both Iowa and Indiana. They are animals with a secretive nature, and comparatively little is know about their basic life history and natural history. To address this gap, and to obtain the information necessary to manage for this species in areas of decline, I studied the breeding biology of two Crawfish Frog populations during 2009 and 2010. Using data collected from drift fence and pitfall trap arrays around breeding wetlands, I estimated breeding population sizes, operational sex ratios, breeding adult size ranges, egg and larval survivorship, juvenile recruitment, and adult within-season and between-year survivorship. I also documented the timing of breeding and metamorphosis, spatial patterns of immigration and emigration from breeding sites by adults and recently metamorphosed juveniles, and the diversity and abundance of associated pond breeding species. Crawfish Frog sex ratios were approximately 1:1 (M:F), with male-biased operational sex ratios. Adult sizes were comparatively larger than those reported in other areas of their range, as were sizes of newly metamorphosed juveniles. Breeding occurred from March through May during both years, and metamorphosis occurred from June through August. The number of eggs deposited per wetland ranged from 45,000 to 189,000. Thirteen associated amphibian species (18,109 individuals) and 14 reptile species (435 individuals) were captured at the breeding wetlands. Crawfish Frog survivorship estimates suggest that mortality is high during the larval stage and relatively low during the egg, juvenile and adult stages. Thus, the adult population is likely regulated by larval survivorship. To help manage for declining populations, captive rearing of larvae could be used to help offset the high mortality experienced during the larval stage and be used to help restore and/or repatriate populations at suitable sites.
    • Affective responses to early recollections of prospective secondary teachers.

      Ferreira, Linda Ohlsen (2012-04-13)
      I wish to express my appreciation to Dr.Reece Chaney who directed this study, and to the other members of my committee who supported and encouraged me.
    • An analysis of eight high school biology textbooks

      McNiel, Forest (2012-08-16)
      Not Available.
    • An objective test in biology

      Dixon, Napoleon (2012-07-30)
      Not Available.
    • Bat Species Diversity at an Urban-Rural Interface: Dominance by One Species in an Urban Area

      Damm, Jason Philip (2012-01-13)
      The growth of urban areas is known to affect different species of wildlife in varying ways. Many organisms have exhibited declines in abundance due to habitat loss, while overall species diversity decreases. Bats can serve as reliable indicators of habitat quality and level of anthropogenic disturbance. To investigate urbanization impacts on a Midwestern bat community, I analyzed nine years of mist-net captures from a study area on the edge of Indianapolis, Indiana, where the percentage of urbanized ground cover ranged from zero to 26%, within 1.3-km of a net site. I used Pearson correlation statistics to examine the effect of urban ground cover on each species’ abundance, and the Shannon-Wiener Diversity Index was used to quantify species diversity at the study area. To test the effect of urbanization on diversity, linear mixed models were constructed using percentage of urban ground cover and year. A total of 10 species were captured over nine years, seven of them annually. The big brown bat (Eptesicus fuscus) was the dominant species at all urbanized sites and at five of six rural sites. Most species were more common at rural sites than at urbanized sites. Urbanization was significantly and negatively related to bat species diversity, although one species, the northern myotis (Myotis septentrionalis), showed a significant positive correlation with urban ground cover. Two bat species, the eastern pipistrelle (Perimyotis subflavus) and the little brown myotis (Myotis lucifugus) both displayed significant negative correlations with the percentage of urban ground cover. The Indiana myotis (Myotis sodalis) had a marginal negative correlation, but not significant.
    • Breeding Migrations, Survivorship, and Obligate Crayfish Burrow Use by Adult Crawfish Frogs (Lithobates Areolatus)

      Heemeyer, Jennifer L (2011-07-19)
      Movements are risky behaviors to animals, and amphibians are no exception. Being unable to cover long distances quickly, amphibians may find migrations challenging, yet many if not most species exhibit cyclic annual migrations. Crawfish Frogs (Lithobates areolatus), are a relatively understudied species of North American amphibian listed as endangered in Indiana and Iowa, and considered a species of conservation concern throughout much of their range. To better understand the biology of this species, and in particular, to assess the role that movements play in affecting survivorship, I radio tracked 48 Crawfish Frog adults, in 2009 and 2010. My study encompassed a total of 7,898 telemetered-frog days; single frogs were tracked for up to 606 days. These data demonstrate two behaviors previously undocumented in this species: 1) migration distances that averaged nearly ½ km, and for one frog was > 1,187 m; and 2) fidelity to upland burrows excavated by crayfish. Together, these findings indicate that Crawfish Frogs have a remarkable ability to home to distant upland burrow sites. Burrow fidelity in Crawfish Frogs involves, in part, frogs following similar migration routes to and from breeding wetlands. Burrow fidelity also occurs after ranging movements, and often involves individual frogs following the same circuit across years. Further, I demonstrate that movements are risky for Crawfish Frogs (about 12 times riskier than burrow dwelling), and therefore have survival consequences. My data also suggest that adult Crawfish Frogs are likely not dispersing to colonize new sites; instead, it seems more likely that juveniles represent the dispersing stage. To ensure the least impact to Crawfish Frog populations several conservation measures should be taken. First, core habitat and buffers should be established that exclude or limit roads for at least a 1.1-km radius around breeding wetlands. Secondly, burrow destruction should be minimized by limiting new cultivation and other ground disturbance within the core habitat and buffer. Thirdly, prescribed burns should be avoided from mid-March to mid-May, when frogs are out of their burrows migrating to and from wetlands.
    • Characterization of Novel Extracellular Matrix (Ecm) Proteins (Mgp and Lumican) and Their Implications in Vascular Development, Angiogenesis, and Cancer

      Sharma, Bikram (2013-01-30)
      Extracellular matrix (ECM) constitutes a large component of our tissue structure. Primarily, ECM provides structural and adhesive support to our cells, but it also controls cellular signaling and behavior. Homeostasis of extracellular matrix composition and function is maintained by our body through a balanced synthesis, degradation and remodeling of ECM. However, under pathological conditions and genetic mutations, ECM homeostasis is disrupted due to deregulation in ECM synthesis, assembly, remodeling, and degradation. A number of diseases, including cardiovascular diseases and cancer, are found to occur due to alterations in ECM. Therefore, targeting ECM can be an attractive therapeutic approach to treat these diseases, and it requires our complete understanding of the ECM molecules and the molecular mechanism it employs in controlling cellular functions. To this end, this study is aimed at the characterization of two ECM proteins—Matrix Gla Protein (MGP) and Lumican—for their roles in vascular development, angiogenesis, and cancer. Findings from this study show that MGP is a critical ECM regulator that promotes angiogenic resolution by suppressing endothelial sprouting and stabilizing vascular lumen formation. In addition, MGP also inhibits tumor growth by inhibiting tumor angiogenesis. On the other hand, our findings show Lumican suppresses tumor growth and has anti-angiogenic activity in a context specific manner.
    • Cloning and Characterization of Hypothetical Exported Proteins from Community Associated Staphylococcus Aureus

      Kaur, Haninder (2013-01-30)
      Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a major cause of nosocomial infections, has acquired resistance to beta-lactam and other antibiotics. Recently, community associated MRSA (CA-MRSA) has developed independent of hospital associated MRSA (HA-MRSA). One of the major differences between the hospital and community strains is that the former is multi-resistant to antibiotics while the latter is not as resistant but is significantly more invasive. This increased invasiveness and the ability to cause life-threatening infections, even in immunocompetent individuals, makes CA-MRSA critically important as a public health problem. CA-MRSA is known to cause skin and soft tissue infections; bacteria interact with host skin cells and gain access to deeper tissues causing invasive infections. During this process the bacteria may secrete proteins that aid in the interaction with the host by adhering, invading or causing host cell death and lysis. To understand the virulence mechanisms involved in invasion, we investigated genes described as hypothetical proteins in MSSA476. The bioinformatics-selected proteins showed high probability of being secreted and most were unique to CA-MRSA. Our analysis showed 24 such genes. This study shows primer design for 15 of the genes (7 of the 24 had already been cloned in our laboratory). Using gateway cloning, the 15 genes were cloned into BL-21 expression clones. CA-MRSA’s are known for causing invasive skin infections. To further understand the involvement of our proteins of interest in invasion, human keratinocyte cell lines were used in a study of virulence and interaction with skin. To understand the involvement of our hypothetical secreted proteins, we investigated the mRNA expression level, using RT-qPCR and Livak method, of 20 hypothetical exported proteins in presence of human dermal keratinocyte cell line. Our investigation revealed two genes that showed increased mRNA expression in the presence of keratinocytes, which may be due to factors associated with keratinocytes that may have triggered increased mRNA expression. Keratinocytes are capable of forming cell-cell junctions and producing antimicrobial peptides and cytokines in response to microbes. The increased mRNA expression of two genes may be towards binding to junctions for invasion or may be expressed in response to antimicrobial peptides or cytokines.
    • Cloning and Characterization of SAS1738, a Hypothetical Exported Protein from Community-Associated Strain of Staphylococcus Aureus

      Vijaya Kumar, Deepak Kumar (2010-09-22)
      Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a group of S. aureus strains that has acquired resistance to a class of beta lactam antibiotics and is the major cause of hospital associated infections. Their discovery goes back to 1960 when the first cases were identified. Recently community associated MRSA infections have emerged and are caused by strains that are independent of those from the hospital environment, related only because they carry some of the same antibiotic resistance genes. Community associated infections (CA) are more severe, producing pus filled lesions that are painful and capable of invasion of deep tissues. Virulence factors comprised of exported proteins are associated with the invasiveness of CA strains. Most of these proteins are hypothetical in nature with unknown function. The aim of this study is to identify and characterize potential virulence factor proteins that may be involved in the infection pathway of CA-MRSA. This study focuses on a unique gene that encodes an exported protein, SAS1738, found on the chromosome of the CA strain MSSA476. The protein SAS1738 was chosen because it is unique to CA strains and has homology to some proteins identified in other S. aureus strains known for their virulence and host immune evasion. The goal of this work is to characterize SAS1738 and to determine its role in the infection pathway of the organism. The gene of interest has been successfully cloned, expressed, and tested for toxicity in Caenorhabditis elegans, a nematode. The toxicity tests showed that SAS1738 is inhibitory to the growth and development of C. elegans. The actual mode of action of this protein in C. elegans is yet to be established. However, location of SAS1738 using a GFP fusion showed that the highest concentration of the fusion protein was in the gut of the worms. The purified protein when tested in a killing assay against C. elegans, resulted in the death of the worms at an average time point of 8 min after treatment. Microbiological assay results showed that the purified SAS1738 possessed antibacterial activity towards Micrococcus luteus and Proteus vulgaris. This suggests that SAS1738 may play a dual role of antagonizing the commensal flora of the human skin such as Micrococcus luteus and also induce a toxic effect on the human cells as suggested by its toxic effect on C. elegans. Determination of the role of this protein in the infection cycle of CA-MRSA will lead to a better understanding of the pathogenicity of the organism and possible development of new treatment strategies.
    • Cognitive,personality and demographic attributes of student change.

      Henry, Jeanne Marie (2012-04-13)
      This study was an examination as to whether cognitive,personality and demographic attributes of students have changed over time.Archival data for 10 coherts of freshman students from a private Midwest engineering institution were used.Data consisted of Myers-Briggs Type Indicator(MBTI) reults,Learning Enviornment Preferences(LEP) results, and demogrpahics.ANOVA's were performed for all interval data and Chi-Square analysess for all nominal data.Statistical significance was found for MBTI Thinking-Perceiving and Sensing-Intution scales,LEP Cognitive Complexity Index scores, and demographic variables including age,parental education level, and SAT scores.Results are discussed in terms of practical significance,trends evidenced in results,implications for further research and educational service provisions.
    • Diurnal and nocturnal avian antipredator behavior in thermally challenging conditions

      Carr, Jennie M. (2014-03-18)
      Diurnal avian antipredator behavior has been the focus of much past research, yet the influence of the thermal environment on such behaviors is often overlooked. Far less is known about nocturnal avian antipredator behavior, including how these behaviors are influenced by challenging thermal environments. The first portion of my research focused on how the thermal environment influences the diurnal antipredator behavior of wintering birds while (i) exposed to high wind speeds, (ii) foraging in sunlit and shaded microhabitats, and (iii) when using thermoregulatory postures to conserve body heat. In addition to increasing convective heat loss, high wind speeds increase the prevalence of background movements in the environment. My research demonstrated that wintering sparrows exposed to a moving stimulus are less likely to flush to cover on windy days than on calm days, suggesting that wind-driven visual noise may interfere with predator detection. Predator detection may also vary when feeding in sunlight and shade, and the thermal benefits of foraging in direct sunlight on cold winter days may also play an important role in dictating microhabitat choice. Regardless of the thermal benefits of foraging in sunlight, wintering sparrows preferred to feed in shaded microhabitats even at ambient temperatures well below thermoneutrality. However, these birds foraged in sunlight more frequently as ambient temperatures fell, suggesting a trade-off between thermoregulation (solar input) and predation risk. Additional evidence of such a thermoregulation-predation trade-off was evident in the use of heat-conserving thermoregulatory postures by wintering sparrows. Fluffing the feathers or standing on one foot will reduce the amount of heat lost to the environment. However, such postures slow take-off time and likely result in an increase in predation risk. As such, these risky postures were only used when feeding at relatively low ambient temperatures and when near protective cover. In general, these results indicate that characteristics of the thermal environment play an important role in dictating diurnal antipredator behavior. To address how the thermal environment influences nocturnal avian antipredator behavior, I examined the predation-related costs of using energy-saving nocturnal hypothermia. Many species of birds reduce their nighttime body temperature, thus reducing metabolic rate and conserving energy. Such drops in body temperature may be quite substantial and likely influence a bird’s ability to respond to a potential threat during the night. To examine the potential costs of hypothermia, I conducted nocturnal flight tests on hypothermic mourning doves (Zenaida macroura). In general, doves that cooled by more than 5 °C flew poorly or were unable to fly, but were able to fly well once re-warmed to near their normal daytime body temperatures. Thus, low body temperatures during energy-saving hypothermia likely result in an increase in the risk of nocturnal predation. Nocturnal antipredator behavior was also examined in ruby-throated hummingbirds (Archilochus colubris). These hummingbirds frequently use nocturnal torpor (i.e., deep hypothermia), with significant reductions in body temperature and corresponding inability to respond behaviorally to external stimuli. Although hummingbirds altered torpor use seasonally and over the course of the observation period, hummingbirds did not consistently reduce their use of torpor following an experimental increase in perceived predation risk. Thus, although hypothermia is behaviorally costly, further studies are needed to clarify the role of predation on nocturnal behavior in birds.
    • Effect of Tai Chi on Cardiac Autonomic Function and Salivary Cortisol Level in Healthy Adults.

      Kalsaria, Pratik (2012-05-21)
      Introduction: An estimated 8.2 million American adults (1 in 3) have 1 or more types of cardiovascular disease. Heart rate variability (HRV) analysis is considered a non-invasive procedure for analyzing cardiovascular autonomic influence. Depressed HRV has been linked to stress and abnormal cardiovascular autonomic modulation. Purpose: This study evaluated the acute effects of tai chi on cardiac autonomic function and cortisol level in healthy adults. Design: 10 healthy adults, 7 females and 3 males, with an average age of 54 ± 2.04 were included in this study. They were asked not to consume any alcoholic or caffeinated beverages at least 24 hours before the study. Each subject practiced tai chi for 1 hour. HRV measurements were obtained at supine rest using Nexus biofeedback device before and after 10 min, 20 min and 30 min post tai chi exercise. Saliva samples were collected before tai chi and after 45 min post tai chi practice. Results: The cardiac autonomic function was assessed using frequency domain HRV analyses. Repeated measures ANOVA revealed that there is significant difference in means of HR, SDNN, nLF and nHF between the pre tai chi and post tai chi groups. Using student’s T-test, we found that the nHF increased significantly from 42.79 ± 4.12 to 52.82 ± 4.39 after 30 min post tai chi exercise (p<0.05). In contrast, nLF decreased significantly from 57.21 ± 4.12 to 52.82 ± 4.39 after 30 min post tai chi exercise (p<0.05). HR significantly decreased from 73 ± 2 to 67.79 ± 2.94 after 30 min post tai chi exercise. Also, SDNN increased significantly from 34 ± 5.26 to 41.38 ± 6.42 after 30 min post tai chi exercise. No significant changes in cortisol level were observed between pre tai chi and post tai chi groups. Conclusion: Tai chi exercise can modulate cardiac autonomic tone by enhancing the vagal activity and reducing the sympathetic activity. Long-term beneficial effects of tai chi on cardiac autonomic function need further investigation.
    • Effects of Ectoparasites and Reproductive Class on Roost-Switching and Foraging Behavior of Indiana Bats (Myotis sodalis)

      Ectoparasites of bats have been known to cause harm to their hosts and to affect roost-switching. Little research exists on effects ectoparasites may have on roosting and foraging behavior of the federally endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis). From 2008 through 2010, I collected ectoparasite data and documented roost-switching and foraging behavior of Indiana bats on habitat restoration lands owned by the Indianapolis International Airport (IND) in central Indiana. I tested for differences in roosting and foraging behavior between bats with varying ectoparasite loads, and for differences in ectoparasite load, roost-switching frequency, and foraging behavior between different reproductive classes of Indiana bats. I used the volume of ectoparasites of each Indiana bat when analyzing data. I found a significant difference in roost-switching frequency and ectoparasite volume between reproductive classes. Neither reproductive class nor ectoparasite load significantly affected any aspect of foraging behavior. Indiana bats in this study apparently maintained moderate loads of ectoparasites which may not affect foraging and roosting, but the insignificant results found in this study may have been due to a small sample size. The significant difference in roost-switching between reproductive classes likely demonstrates variation in bat thermoregulation. Lactating females and pregnant females have a higher need for group thermoregulation and switch roosts less frequently than post-lactating females and volant juveniles. Because ectoparasites have been found to increase in maternity colonies, volant juveniles and post-lactating females may disperse from the main colony roost and switch roosts more often to avoid higher intensities of ectoparasites.
    • Evaluation of an Avian Radar System

      Gerringer, Michael B. (2014-03-18)
      The problem of bird strikes in aviation is becoming an increasing threat, both to aircraft and to human safety. Management efforts have reduced wildlife hazards below 500 feet and within the immediate airport environment, but traditional methods of monitoring bird activity are limited to an observer’s field of view. Avian radar systems could potentially be useful in monitoring bird activity at great distances from the airport, at higher altitudes, and at night (Dolbeer 2006), but little work has been done to validate the tracking capabilities of avian radar systems. Thus, the goal of this research is to evaluate the detection and tracking abilities of the Merlin Avian Radar System provided by DeTect Inc. Radio-controlled (RC) aircraft flights were used to systematically test the tracking abilities of the Merlin System with respect to distance and altitude. Transits by free-flying birds provided an equally important test of the Merlin System, allowing for the assessment of tracking performance as influenced by flock size, altitude, and distance from the radar unit. Overall tracking performance regarding the RC aircraft and single large bird targets was poor across all study distances and altitudes. However, flocks of large birds such as geese and cranes were tracked well, even those several miles away from the radar unit. Given these results, avian radar could be a useful tool for monitoring bird flock activity at airports, but less so for single large bird targets such as thermalling raptors.
    • Extracellular Matrix Proteins: Implications for Angiogenesis

      Williams, Kent Edward (2010-07-20)
      The extracellular matrix (ECM) is an essential requirement for maintaining permanent shape and rigidity in multicellular organisms. The ECM serves two main functions: scaffolding and signaling. Insoluble collagen and soluble proteoglycans, glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), and glycoproteins allow for water retention and flexibility. The signaling role of the ECM is essential for a multitude of events including vascular development and angiogenesis. Via interactions with vascular endothelial cells, proteins of the ECM can induce or repress angiogenesis.
    • Foraging behavior and seasonal movements of the eastern red bat(Lasiurus Borealis)in Central Indiana.

      Everson, Brianne.L (2012-04-13)
      Twenty-four female Eastern red bats(Lasiurus borealis) were captured and tracked to foraging areas near the Indianapolis International Airport during the summers of 2003 and 2004 with full foraging data obtained on 13. A series of multi-azimuth(3-7) triangulations was used to estimate the location of each bat throughout the night.Euclidean distance analysis was used to examine habitat sue by L.borealis.These bats had smaller home ranges than previously noted as well as smaller homes ranges than other species at this location.They foraged over woodlands,newly planted tree fields,open water,park and pasture lands more than predicted by randomly generated points. They avoided highly urban areas such as commercial lands,gravel pits and transportation corridors more than predicted by randomly generated points.Four female L.borealis were tracked leaving the study site between 15 July and 15 August in 2003 and 2004.Simultaneously,signals were lost on four additional radio-tagged bats.Long-term capture rates of adult L.borealis were examined during 3 netting periods(15 May-15 June,15 June-15 July and 15 July-15 August) from 1998-1999,2002-2004.Nearly twice as many adult L.borealis were captured in the third round of netting compared to the previous two rounnds.Based on a comparison of bats radio-tracked leaving the study area with typical home rage sizes of L.borealis at this site, an increase in lost radio tags,and an increase in capture rates of adult female L.borealis during late summer,it appears that L.borealis begins migrating through the study area in late July.Telemetry data indicate their movement through central Indiana is from east tp west,instead of north to south as idicated in large-scale analyses.