Jennifer Nguyen

Document Type

Honors Thesis


There is new evidence that environmental stressors can induce phenotypic changes that persist for several generations. These ‘transgenerational’ effects can be studied through the interplay between freshwater species of zooplankton and their predators. The transgenerational effects of invertebrate predator cues on the expression of life history traits in water fleas (Daphnia ambigua) were tested and analyzed. Daphnia were reared in the presence and absence of predator cues for X generations. An additional treatment received exposure to predators for the first generation only. The results show that predator cues caused increased reproductive outputs but no influence on the size of individuals across generations. By applying these findings beyond the scope of ecological properties and towards human communities, a better understanding of how transgenerational effects can influence human-related diseases as well as host-pathogen interactions can be postulated.

Publication Date






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