CV

ÁKI JARL LÁRUSON
Curriculum Vitae


Personal

Postdoctoral Associate
Department of Environmental Resources
Cornell University
111 Fernow Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853
ajl446@cornell.edu


Education

Ph.D. Zoology (Ecology, Evolution, & Conservation Biology), from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa in 2018.

B.Sc. General Biology with a Chemistry minor, from Humboldt State University in 2010.


Publications

Books
Láruson, Á.J. & Reed F.A. Population Genetics with R: An Introduction for Life Scientists. Oxford University Press. Oxford, UK. 2021. ISBN: 9780198829539

Published and In Press Journal Articles
Lotterhos, K.E.; Láruson, Á.J.; Jiang, Li-Qing (2021) Novel and disappearing climates in the global surface ocean from 1800 to 2100. Scientific Reports 11, 15535. doi:10.1038/s41598-021-94872-4

Láruson, Á.J.; Yeaman, S.; Lotterhos, K.E. (2020) The importance of genetic redundancy in evolution. Trends in Ecology & Evolution 35(9):809-822. doi:10.1016/j.tree.2020.04.009

Amend, A.S.; Cobian, G.M.; Láruson, Á.J.; Remple, K.; Tucker, S.J.; Poff, K.E.; Antaky, C.; Boraks, A.; Jones, C.A.; Kuehu, D.; Lensing, B.R.; Pejhanmehr, M. Richardson, D.T.; Riley, P.P. (2019) Phytobiomes are compositionally nested from the ground up. PeerJ 7:e6609. doi:10.7717/peerj.6609

Láruson, Á.J.; Coppard, S.; Pespeni, M.; Reed, F. (2018) Gene expression across tissues, sex, and life stages in the sea urchin Tripneustes gratilla [Toxopneustidae, Odontophora, Camarodonta]. Marine Genomics 41:12-18. doi:10.1016/j.margen.2018.07.002

Láruson, Á.J. (2017) Rates and relations of mitochondrial genome evolution across the Echinoidea, with special focus on the superfamily Odontophora. Ecology and Evolution 7(13):4543-4551. doi:10.1002/ece3.3042

Láruson, Á.J. & Reed F.A. (2016) Stability of underdominant genetic polymorphisms in population networks. Journal of Theoretical Biology 390:156-163. doi:10.1016/j.jtbi.2015.11.023

Láruson, Á.J.; Craig S.F. ; Messer K.J.; Mackie J.A. (2012) Rapid and reliable inference of mitochondrial phylogroups among Watersipora species, an invasive group of ship-fouling species (Bryozoa, Cheilostomata). Conservation Genetics Resources 4(3):617-619. doi:10.1007/s12686-012-9606-9


Professional Experience/Service

Manuscript reviews: Journal of the Royal Society Interface; Molecular Ecology; Molecular Ecology Resources; Genomics; Journal of Heredity; Conservation Genetics; Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology.

Scientific Committee member: Icelandic Ecological Society meeting (April 16-17, 2021).

Workshop co-organizer: SLiM evolutionary simulation software, at the University of Iceland (March 6-10, 2020).

Grant review: Eimskip University Fund/The Research Fund of University of Iceland for doctoral studies.

Research assistant. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa (Spring 2012-Spring 2017). DNA extractions, PCR optimization, DNA sequencing preparation, phylogenetic analyses, microsatellite analysis, Drosophila fly crossing and stock maintenance (Spring 2012 & Spring 2014). Identification and sorting of molluscs in sediment trawls for the purpose of assessing water quality at key locations around sewage outflow through the UH Water Resources Research Center (Fall 2016 & Spring 2017).

Biology Search Committee Graduate Representative (Spring 2014). Served as the representative of the graduate community on a search committee for two tenure track faculty positions in Evolutionary and Developmental Biology in the Biology Department at UH Mānoa.

Ecology, Evolution, & Conservation Biology Specialization Graduate Student Representative, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa (2012-2013).

Department of Biology Graduate Student Representative, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa (2012-2013).

Laboratory Researcher. San José State University, San José, California. (2010-2011). Sample collections, DNA extraction/purification, PCR primer design and optimization.


Grant & Awards

University of Hawai‘i Graduate Student Organization (2017): $957

Stanley W. Watson Foundation Education Fund (2017): $1,852.50

University of Hawai‘i Graduate Student Organization (2016): $997

Hampton & Meredith Carson Fellowship (2015): $3,000

Charles H. & Margaret B. Edmondson Research Fund Special (2015): $2,000

Charles H. & Margaret B. Edmondson Research Fund (2014): $2,000

Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute Short Term Fellowship (2014): $800

Watson T. Yoshimoto Fellowship (2014): $3,700

Linnean Society of London & Systematics Association Research Fund (2014): $1,000

Elizabeth A. Kay Endowed Award (2014): $1,000

Sigma Xi Grant-in-Aid of Research (2013): $500

17th Summer Institute in Statistical Genetics scholarship assistance (2013): $2,325

Jessie D. Kay Memorial Fellowship grant recipient (2012): $10,000

University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa RTF Fund (2012): $1,000

Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent (SMART) (2007-2009): $8,025 (total)


Invited Presentations

“Critical assessment of a machine learning approach for measuring the ‘genomic vulnerability’ of a population to climate change.” January 17th 2020. Cornell University, Ithaca, New York.

“Evolving seas: Climate change, population dynamics, and evolution.” November 16th 2019. University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada.

“Seeing the forest through the trees: identifying genetic signatures of adaptation in a complex environment.” February 21st 2019. Northeastern University Marine Science Center. Nahant, MA.

“Evolving Seas; Climate change, Community, and Evolution” January 4th 2019. University of Iceland. Reykjavík, Iceland.

“Mitochondrial genome evolution and differential gene expression in the pan-tropical sea urchin Tripneustes gratilla.” January 6th 2017. University of Iceland. Reykjavík, Iceland.

“Mitochondrial genome evolution in sea urchins, with special focus on the Indo-Pacific species Tripneustes gratilla.” Feb. 10th 2016. Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology. Okinawa, Japan.


Conference Presentations & posters

“Seeing the forest for the trees: Assessing genetic offset predictions with Gradient Forest. June 23rd 2021. Virtual Evolution conference.

“Assessing the measure of ‘genomic vulnerability’ of a population to climate change.” March 4th 2020. Conference of the Nordic Society Oikos, Reykjavík, Iceland.

“Critical assessment of a machine learning approach for measuring the ‘genomic vulnerability’ of a population to climate change.” June 25th 2019. Evolution conference, Providence, RI.

“Scaling signals of molecular divergence in the pan-tropical sea urchin Tripneustes: methods and context matter.” July 23th 2018. The American Genetic Association President’s Symposium. Waimea, HI. (Poster)

“Mitochondrial genome, transcriptome, and representative exome of Tripneustes gratilla.” July 13th 2017. 8th North American Echinoderm Conference. College of the Holy Cross. Worcester, MA.

“Differential gene expression across tissues, sex, and life stages in the sea urchin Tripneustes gratilla. June 25th 2017. Evolution Conference, Portland, OR.

“Differential gene expression across tissues, sex, and life stages in the sea urchin Tripneustes gratilla.” April 26th 2017. 42nd Annual Tester Symposium. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. HI.

“Mitochondrial genome evolution sea urchins.” March 24th 2017. Ecology, Evolution, & Conservation Biology Evoluncheon seminar. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. HI.

“Morphological and Molecular Comparison of Central Pacific and Caribbean Sea Urchins.” Victoria Sharp, Áki Jarl Láruson, Dr. Floyd Reed. Undergraduate Research Experiences in DNA-based discoveries in Hawaiʻi’s biodiversity (NSF REU: DBI 1560491). August 3rd, 2016. University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI. (Poster)

“Mitochondrial genome evolution in sea urchins, with special focus on the Indo-Pacific species Tripneustes gratilla.” June 19th 2016. Evolution Conference. Austin, Texas.

“Baileen them out: fin and minke whale hunting and protection in the North Atlantic.” April 29th 2016. Ecology, Evolution, & Conservation Biology Evoluncheon seminar. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. HI.

“Mitochondrial genome evolution in sea urchins, with special focus on the Indo-Pacific species Tripneustes gratilla.” April 7th 2016. 41st Annual Tester Symposium. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. HI.

“Population structure and evolutionary history of the Hawaiian Collector Urchin, Tripneustes gratilla.” March 19th 2016. 45th Benthic Ecology Conference. Portland, Maine.

“Population structure and evolutionary history of the Hawaiian Collector Urchin, Tripneustes gratilla, an emerging biocontrol agent.” Nov. 7th 2015. 96th Western Society of Naturalists meeting. Sacramento, CA.

“Genomic divergence on a small planet.” April 9th 2015. 40th Annual Tester Symposium. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. HI.

“Eastern Pacific Barrier holding? Connectivity patterns of the collector urchin Tripneustes.” March 13th 2015. Ecology, Evolution, & Conservation Biology Evoluncheon seminar. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. HI.

“What is Conservation Genetics anyway?” Feb. 2nd 2014. Ecology, Evolution, & Conservation Biology Evoluncheon seminar. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. HI.

“Speciation across oceans: teasing apart members of the sea urchin genus Tripneustes.” Feb. 1st 2013. Ecology, Evolution, & Conservation Biology Evoluncheon seminar. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. HI.


Public engagement

“Modeling marine biology: Challenges of increasingly dynamic populations in the sea.” October 8th 2019. Blog post for the Research Coordinated Network for Evolution in Changing Seas. https://rcn-ecs.github.io/2019-10-08-Laruson-ModMarBio/

Co-organized and taught at the NSF funded Evolution in Changing Seas Career Workshop for Girls (April 16th and 17th, 2019), a workshop for high school girls and two High School teachers on topics related to marine ecology, climate changes, molecular evolution, epigenetics, and biology focused careers.

“Evolving marine biology: A famous bird biologist’s foray into marine biology.” October 12th 2018. Blog post for the Research Coordinated Network for Evolution in Changing Seas. https://rcn-ecs.github.io/2018-10-12-Laruson-EvolMarBio/

“Sunnudagssögur.” January 8th 2017.
Iceland public radio, discussing studying biology in the tropics as well as living in Hawai’i.

“Baileen them out: Populations, perceptions, and policy on whaling in Iceland.” December 6th 2016. Presented at Nerd Nite Honolulu, a monthly science focused community outreach event.

“The Tale of Darwin and the Beagle with Áki Jarl Láruson.” June 19th 2016. Tumble Science Podcast for Kids.

“Understanding Urchins with Aki Laruson and Caitlyn Genovese.” Nov. 10th 2014. Interview for ThinkTech Hawaii, hosted by Jay Fidell.

College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources Gene-ius Day Instructor (2013-2017). Instructing elementary school children in basic Biology and Chemistry, providing an introduction to biotechnology in agriculture on both O’ahu and Kaua’i.

College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources Gene-ius Day Volunteer (2013).
Instructing elementary school children how to extract DNA from fruit.

Berniece Pauahi Bishop Museum (2013). Volunteered for Science Alive! family event; Strawberry DNA extraction and Doggy DNA activity.


Teaching Experience

Co-Instructor, Fundamentals of population genetics using R (Fall 2020). Online course provided through PR Statistics.

Teaching Assistant, Workshop on Molecular Evolution, Marine Biology Laboratory, Woods Hole, MA, USA (Summer 2019).

Guest Lecturer, Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA (Fall 2018). Lectured on effective population size and population dissimilarity metrics (EEMB 3465: Ecological and Conservation Genomics; Instructor: Prof. Kathleen Lotterhos).

Guest Lecturer, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Spring 2018). Lectured on biogeography and molecular evolution in the marine environment (Bio 404: Advanced Topics in Marine Biology; Instructor: Prof. Les Watling).

Guest Lecturer, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Spring 2014, Spring 2015, & Spring 2016, & Spring 2017). Lectured on the application of population genetics to conservation (Zool 480: Evolutionary Biology; Instructor: Prof. Robert Thomson).

Guest Lecturer, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Fall 2016). Lectured on genetic drift and gave a brief review of neutral theory of molecular evolution (Zool 780: Foundations of Ecology & Evolution; Instructors: Prof. Floyd Reed, Prof. Amber Wright, Prof. Robert Thomson).

Assistant Directed Studies Mentor, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Fall 2015, Spring 2016, & Fall 2016). Served as the primary point of contact during the directed research projects of four undergraduate students (Kelsey Wagner, Michael Wallstrom, Victoria Sharp, Casey Barton).

Guest Lecturer, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Fall 2015, Fall 2016). Lectured on a general introduction to population genetics (Biol 375: Principles of Genetics; Instructor: Prof. Floyd Reed).

Scientific Teaching Tools for Active Learning, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Spring 2014). Completed a course on evidence-based techniques for improving teaching effectiveness.

Guest Lecturer, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Fall 2013, Spring, Fall 2014, & Fall 2016). Lectured on the general anatomy, systematics and evolutionary history of the Phylum Echinodermata (Zool 475: Invertebrate Zoology; Instructor: Prof. Julie Brock).

Guest Lecturer, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Spring 2013). Lectured on sexual selection in the marine environment (Biol 301: Marine Ecology & Evolution; Instructor: Prof. Dave Carlon).

Seminar Instructor, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Fall 2012). Introduction to R for first semester graduate level Biometry students.

Guest Lecturer, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Fall 2012).Lectured on the basics of molecular techniques and wet bench protocols (Zool 719: Molecular Ecology; Instructor: Prof. Dave Carlon).

Guest Lecturer, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (Fall 2011). Lectured on the general anatomy and evolutionary history of the Phylum Bryozoa (Zool 475: Invertebrate Zoology; Instructor: Prof. Julie Brock).

Teaching Assistant. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA. (2011-Present). Invertebrate Zoology (Fall 2011, Fall 2013, & Fall 2015); Molecular Ecology (Fall 2012); Marine Ecology and Evolution (Spring 2013); Genetics (Fall 2014 & Fall 2015); Cell & Molecular Biology (Spring 2015 & Spring 2018).

Undergraduate Tutor. Humboldt State University Teaching & Learning Center. Arcata, CA, USA (2009-2010). Biology, Zoology, and Chemistry subjects.


Societies and Associations

Member of the Society for the Study of Evolution (2014-2021)

Member of the Genetic Society of America (2016-2021)

Member of the American Society of Naturalists (2020-2021)


Research Skills and Certifications

Adept at the R and Python programming languages, as well as the Eidos language used by simulation software SLiM.

Completed a SLiM Workshop on using the software for forward genetic simulations. Cornell University, Ithaca, NY (2020).

Completed the Marine Biology Laboratory (MBL) Workshop on Molecular Evolution, Woods Hole, MA (2017).

Completed Bioinformatics Genomics Data Workshop, sponsored by the University of Hawai’i Information Technology Services Cyberinfrastructure group, the Texas Advanced Computing Center and Hawai’i EPSCoR, focusing on data management and analysis for genomics research (2017).

Completed an online course ‘Analysis of Organismal Forms’ on the use of morphometric data acquisition and analysis through the University of Manchester (2015).

Trained in the use of the High Performance Computing (HPC) cluster at UH Mānoa and the use of the Simple Linux Utility for Resource Management (SLURM) system (2015).

Completed the Bodega Bay Applied Phylogenetics workshop (2013).

Completed Software Carpentry workshop in basic command line programming and introduction to the Python programming language for scientists at the UH Mānoa (2012 & 2015).

Completed modules in Bayesian Statistics for Genetics; Molecular Genetics & Genomics; Quantitative Genetics; and Molecular Phylogenetics at the 17th Summer Institute in Statistical Genetics, University of Washington, WA (2012).

Completed workshop in Evolutionary Quantitative Genetics at the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, Durham, NC (2012).

Certified by the University of Hawaiʻi Hazardous Materials Management Program for the basic handling, storing, and disposing of hazardous waste in compliance with Environmental Protection Agency and Hawaiʻi Department of Health regulations (2013-2017).

PADI Open Water dive certified.

AAUS Scientific Diver-in-training.

American Heart Association Pediatric First Aid CPR AED certified.


Mentoring & Community Service

Judge for the 4th annual Graduate Student Symposium (2019). Northeastern University Marine Science Center.

Graduate Student Panelist (2018). Served as a panelist on graduate school and graduate education for visiting REU students at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

Graduate Student Panelist (2018). Served as a panelist on graduate school and graduate education for undergraduates for the College of Natural Sciences’ Student Academic Success Center.

Niu Valley Middle School (2017). Volunteer science fair judge for grades 6 through 8.

Volunteer at the 41st Annual Tester Symposium. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. HI. (2016). Visual material uploads for presenters, and session chair support.

Volunteer at the 96th Western Society of Naturalists meeting. Sacramento, CA (2016).
Assisted with attendee registration, visual material uploads for presenters, and session chair support.

Mililani-Mauka Elementary School (2014). Volunteer annual tide walk with students and parents at Maili beach.

Department of Land and Natural Resources (2014). Moku‘auia Islet invasive plant removal.

Mililani-Mauka Elementary school (2013). Volunteer annual tide walk with students and parents at Maili beach.

Taro field restoration, Māhuahua ʻAi o Hoi (2012-2013). Restoration of the Heʻeia wetlands and associated Taro fields.

Kahuku beach clean-up, Kōkua Hawai‘i Foundation (2012). Clearing Kahuku beach of litter.

SEA Lab aquarist assistant, Los Angeles Conservation Corps (2007). Duties included, but were not limited to, leading educational tour groups around aquarium exhibits, aquarium tank cleaning, shark feeding, native plant nursery maintenance.


References

Asst. Prof. Kathleen Lotterhos: (617) 373-2059 / k.lotterhos@northeastern.edu Department of Marine and Environmental Sciences, Northeastern University

Assoc. Prof. Floyd Reed: (808) 956-6489 / floydr@hawaii.edu
Biology Department faculty, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

Assoc. Prof. Robert Thomson: (808) 956-6476 / thomsonr@hawaii.edu
Biology Department Faculty, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

Assoc. Prof. Dave Carlon: (207) 798-4364 / dcarlon@bowdoin.edu
Director of Bowdoin Marine Laboratory (BML), Bowdoin College