Graduate student achievements


Bristi Poudel (Ph.D. Student, MCSP Graduate Program, Cheatwood Lab) received the People's Choice award at the 2023 "Three-Minute Thesis" competition at the SIU Graduate School. This competition promotes graduate students' ability to communicate their research in a short 3-minute time frame.

Girl in a jacket



Natalee Hite (PhD Student, MCSP Graduate Program, Sarko Lab) received the Rose and Essie Padgett Scholarship which to recognizes highly-qualified student members of Sigma Xi. Click here for more information on this scholarship and here for a photo

Bristi Poudel (PhD Student, MCSP Graduate Program, Cheatwood Lab) received a 2022 Histochemical Society Cornerstone Grant

Pratyusa Das was awarded 2nd place for her oral presentation at the 32nd Annual Trainee Research Symposium held April 12 & 15 at SIU School of Medicine. Pratyusa's mentor is Dr. Buffy Ellsworth.

Titas Roy has been selected to receive the Marlene Rotbart Matten Excellence in Health Research Award. The award is in memory of Marlene Rotbart Matten, a nurse at Memorial Hospital of Carbondale, who, while working full-time as Director of Education and raising a family of four children, earned Masters and Doctoral degrees at SIUC.


Rupak Thapa and Pratyusa Das were selected to be the SIU student representatives for the Illinois Symposium on Reproductive Sciences (ISRS) meeting which will be held the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign on October 11, 2021.

Congratulations to Pratyusa Das who was selected for the 2021-2022 Research Experiences for Graduate and Medical Students (REGMS).The REGMS program includes support for participation in endocrinology research and year-round career development as well as ongoing mentorship to help Pratyusa achieve her career goals.

Recent graduate Dr. Caitlin Stallings received the award for Outstanding Dissertation for her submission titled "Forkhead Factors FOX01 and FOX03 in Pituitary Gland Development and Function.

Pratyusa Das was featured in the Daily Egyptian detailing the focus of her current research. Click on the link to view the article.…;

Older achievements

Congratulations to Deepak Hiremath on having his paper "High levels of testosterone cause chondrocyte accumulation and loss of smooth muscle in the mouse penile body" featured in the SSR weekly news .

Purab Pal received 3rd place at the "Three-Minute Thesis" competition in the SIU Graduate School. This competition promotes graduate students' ability to communicate their research in a short 3-minute time frame.

Deepak Hiremath received 1st place at the SIU SOM trainee research symposium poster competition for his poster titled "Sexual Dysfunction in a Mouse Model of Familial-Male Limited Precocious Puberty."

Caitlin Stallings received 2nd place in oral presentations during the SIU SOM research symposium for her talk titled "FOXO1 Contributes to Somatotrope Differentiation Through Regulation of Key Transcription Factors."

Sandeep Adhikari received 3rd place in oral presentations during the SIU SOM research symposium for his talk titled "Assessing the Pathogenicity of Newly Identified De-Novo Variants in DEAF1-Associated Neurodevelopmental Disorders (DAND)."

Nikola Sekulovski was the the recipient of the 2019 Gates Foundation-SSR Scholarship (Made possible by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation). Nikola was selected to attend the MBL Frontiers in Reproduction course offered from April 27-June 9, 2019.

Caitlin Stallings was published in Endocrinology for an article entitled " Premature Expression of FOX01 in Developing Mouse Pituitary Results in Anterior Lobe Hypoplasia". Click here to view the article. 

Caitlin Stallings was the recipient of an Early Career Forum Travel Award from the Endocrine Society. The annual ENDO meeting will be March 16-20, 2018.

2018 Assembly of the Fellows

Chelsea Griffith was invited to attend the SIU Graduate School 2017 Assembly of Fellows Reception held on October 12 where she was recognized as a recipient of the Dissertation Research Award for the School of Medicine.

Caitlin Stallings was the recipient of a Women in Endocrinology Young Investigator award. The award will be given at the WE dinner on Saturday, April 1, 2017. She will receive a monetary award that can go towards her attendance to the Endocrine Society meeting.

Chris Weston received the Sigma Xi Grants in Aid of Research.

Congratulations to our Ph.D. Graduates. Pictured below are Anirrudha Ghosh, Anushka Dikshit, Lan Hai and Sheree Speckman

Jessica Whitaker earned first place in the oral presentations at the 26th Annual SOM Trainee Symposium for her talk entitled, “Muscle-Specific Expression of Channelrhodopsin-2 in Chick Embryos”.

Anushka Dikshit was the recipient of the SIUC DRA (Dissertation Research Award). Click for more information

Lan Hai received the Lalor Foundation Merit Award and third place award in the Trainee Research Poster Competition at the 48th Annual Meeting of the Society of the Study of Reproduction in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Jyoti Kapali was the Women in Endocrinology Sponsored Early Career Forum Travel Awardee for ENDO 2015.


Publications from Physiology Graduate Students
Ferdousy S, Chen B.  An assessment of genome-editing efficiency of a newly developed Cas9 in C. elegans. MicroPubl Biol. 2022 Jul 17;2022:10.17912/micropub.biology.000601. doi: 10.17912/micropub.biology.000601. eCollection 2022.

McGee SR, Rajamanickam S, Adhikari S, Falayi OC, Wilson TA, Shayota BJ, Cooley Coleman JA, Skinner C, Caylor RC, Stevenson RE, D' Angioli Costa Quaio CR, Wilke BC, Bain JM, Anyane-Yeboa K, Brown K, Greally JM, Bijlsma EK, Ruivenkamp CAL, Politi K, Arbogast LA, Collard MW, Huggenvik JI, Elsea SH, Jensik PJ.  Expansion and mechanistic insights of de novo DEAF1 variants in DEAF1-associated neurodevelopmental disorders. Hum Mol Genet. 2022 Aug 18:ddac200. doi: 10.1093/hmg/ddac200. PMID: 35981081

Stallings CE, Kapali J, Evans BW, McGee SR, Ellsworth BS.  FOXO Transcription Factors Are Required for Normal Somatotrope Function and Growth. Endocrinology. 2022 Feb 1;163(2):bqab263. doi: 10.1210/endocr/bqab263.PMID: 34971379

Hite, N.J..; Sudheimer, K.D; Anderson, L..; Sarko, D.K. Spatial Learning and Memory in the Naked Mole Rat: Evolutionary Adaptations to a Subterannean Niche. . Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 2022. https://doi: 10.3389/fevo.2022.879989

Weston,W.C.; Hales, K.H.; Hales, D.B. Flaxseed Increases Animal Lifespan and Reduces
Ovarian Cancer Severity by Toxically Augmenting One-Carbon Metabolism. Molecules 2021, 26, 5674. molecules26185674

A Review of Principal Studies on the Development and Treatment of Epithelial Ovarian Cancer in the Laying Hen Gallus gallus.
Pal P, Starkweather KN, Hales KH, Hales DB.Comp Med. 2021 Aug 1;71(4):271-284. doi: 10.30802/AALAS-CM-20-000116. Epub 2021 Jul 29.PMID:  34325771

Constitutive LH receptor activity impairs NO-mediated penile smooth muscle relaxation.
Hiremath DS, Priviero FBM, Webb RC, Ko C, Narayan P.Reproduction. 2021 Jan;161(1):31-41. doi: 10.1530/REP-20-0447.PMID:  33112284

Altered hippocampal astroglial metabolism is associated with aging and preserved spatial learning and memory.
Ebersole J, Rose G, Eid T, Behar K, Patrylo P.Neurobiol Aging. 2021 Jun;102:188-199. doi: 10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2021.02.015. Epub 2021 Feb 26.PMID:  33774381

Hai, L., Hiremath, D.S., Paquet, M. and Narayan, P. (2017) Constitutive luteinizing hormone receptor signaling causes sexual dysfunction and Leydig cell adenomas in male mice. Biol. Reprod. 96:1007-1018.

Dikshit A, Gomes Filho MA, Eilati E, et al. Flaxseed reduces the pro-carcinogenic micro-environment in the ovaries of normal hens by altering the PG and oestrogen pathways in a dose-dependent manner. British Journal of Nutrition. 2015:1-12.

Hai, L, McGee, S.R., Rabideau, A.C., Paquet, M. and Narayan, P. (2015) Infertility in Female Mice with a Gain-of-Function Mutation in the Luteinizing Hormone Receptor is due to Irregular Estrous Cyclicity, Anovulation, Hormonal Alterations and Polycystic Ovaries. Biol. Reprod. 93:16, 1-11. PMID 26040673.

Welborn JP, Davis MG, Ebers SD, Stodden GR, Hayashi K, Cheatwood JL, Rao MK, and MacLean JA (2015).  Rhox8 ablation in the Sertoli cells using a tissue-specific RNAi approach results in impaired male fertility in mice.  Biology of Reproduction 93(1):8-16 PMID: 25972016

King ML, Lindberg ME, Stodden GR, Okuda H, Ebers SD, Johnson A, Montag A, Lengyel E, MacLean JA, and Hayashi K (2014).  WNT7A/β-catenin signaling induces FGF1 and influences sensitivity to niclosamide in ovarian cancer.   Oncogene 34(26):3452-62.  PMID: 25174399

Stodden GR, Lindberg ME, King ML, Paquet M, MacLean JA, Mann JL, DeMayo FJ, Lydon JP, Hayashi K (2014).  Loss of Cdh1 and Trp53 in the uterus induces chronic inflammation with modification of tumor microenvironment.   Oncogene 34(19):2471-82 PMID: 24998851

Lindberg ME, Stodden GR, King ML, MacLean JA, Mann JL, DeMayo FJ, Lydon JP, and Hayashi K (2013).  Loss of Cdh1 and Pten accelerates cellular invasiveness and angiogenesis in the mouse uterus. Biology of Reproduction 89:8. PMID: 23740945

Kanak DJ, Rose GM, Zaveri HP, Patrylo PR. 2013 Altered network timing in the CA3-CA1 circuit in hippocampal slices from aged mice. PLoS ONE. In press.

Brown RM, Davis MG, Hayashi K, MacLean JA 2nd. 2013 Regulated expression of Rhox8 in the mouse ovary: Evidence for the role of progesterone and RHOX5 in granulosa cells. Mar 27. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 23536368

Majumdar S, Farris CL, Kabat BE, Jung DO, Ellsworth BS. 2012 Forkhead Box O1 is Increased in Embryonic Pituitary in the Absence of p27kip1. PLoS ONE, 7:e52136. PMID: 23251696

Eilati E, Pan L, Bahr JM, Hales DB. 2012 Age dependent increase in prostaglandin pathway coincides with onset of ovarian cancer in laying hens. Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. 87:177-84. PMID: 23089186

Kanak DJ, Jones RT, Tokhi A, Willingham AL, Zaveri HP, Rose GM, Patrylo PR. 2011 Electrical and Pharmacological Stimuli Reveal a Greater Susceptibility for CA3 Network Excitability in Hippocampal Slices from Aged vs. Adult Fischer 344 Rats. Aging Dis. 2:318-31. PMID: 22396884

Reardon SN, King ML, MacLean JA 2nd, Mann JL, DeMayo FJ, Lydon JP, Hayashi K. 2012 CDH1 is essential for endometrial differentiation, gland development, and adult function in the mouse uterus. Biol Reprod. 86:141, 1-10. PMID: 22378759

Scott CA, van Huyen D, Bany BM. 2012 Angiopoietin-like gene expression in the mouse uterus during implantation and in response to steroids. Cell Tissue Res. 348:199-211. PMID: 22350948

Huyen DV, Bany BM. 2011 Evidence for a conserved function of heart and neural crest derivatives expressed transcript 2 in mouse and human decidualization. Reproduction. 142:353-68. PMID: 21527398

McConaha ME, Eckstrum K, An J, Steinle JJ, Bany BM. 2011 Microarray assessment of the influence of the conceptus on gene expression in the mouse uterus during decidualization. Reproduction. 141:511-27. PMID: 21300692

Hayashi K, Yoshioka S, Reardon SN, Rucker EB 3rd, Spencer TE, DeMayo FJ, Lydon JP, MacLean JA 2nd. 2011 WNTs in the neonatal mouse uterus: potential regulation of endometrial gland development. Biol Reprod. 84:308-319. PMID: 20962251