+1 814 865 1740 eam7@psu.edu


Professor Elizabeth ( Beth ) McGraw –  Group Leader  

Departments of Biology & Entomology — Penn State University

Photo by Patrick Mansell

Beth studied Biology at the University of Michigan before doing a PhD at The Pennsylvania State University on the evolution of virulence genes in human pathogens. During her postdoc at Yale University School of Public Health she began working in the Wolbachia:insect system attracted by the ability to ask questions about the evolution of mutualism versus virulence in symbionts. She then moved to the University of Queensland for further postdoctoral research before taking up an assistant professor position. Beth joined Monash University in 2011 as a Larkins Fellow where her work has focused on the mosquito:dengue:Wolbachia association. In 2017, Beth returned to Penn State as a Professor in the Entomology

Department and soon after became the Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics. She is currently a Huck Scholar in Entomology and Head of Biology at Penn State.

Google Scholar profile

ORCID: 0000-0001-7973-088X

Email : eam7@psu.edu

Dr Meng-Jia Lau – Postdoctoral Scholar

Meng-Jia did her PhD in Melbourne university and investigated the fitness and evolutionary impacts of Wolbachia in the dengue mosquito Aedes aegypti. She is interested in interactions among Wolbachia, host and virus, the efficiency of Wolbachia mediate virus blocking and evolutionary impacts of Wolbachia on their hosts.

Google Scholar profile

ORCID: 0000-0003-2943-7022 

Twitter: @MengJiaLau1 

Email : mvl6208@psu.edu

Fhallon Ware-Gilmore – PhD student

Fhallon obtained her bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science from The University of West Alabama. She is broadly interested in the ecology of vector-borne diseases. Specifically, how environmental variation can influence insect behavior, biology, and disease emergence. 

Her current research focuses on understanding the underlying consequences of a globally changing climate and addresses questions regarding the influence of viral infection on mosquito thermal tolerance, specifically relating to the history of heat exposure, history of evolutionary adaptation, and the involvement of heat shock processes. In parallel, her research aims to gain insight into whether current limitations in dengue virus thermotolerance are likely to evolve under higher temperatures.

By looking into this complex interplay in mosquito physiology, ecology, genetics, and evolution, her hope is to better understand the various factors that may facilitate/and or limit mosquito response to a changing environment.

 Fhallon has additional interest in public health communication and service, and in supporting scientific outreach in underrepresented communities.

Visit my website here

Linkedin profile

Email : fxw13@psu.edu

Suk Lan Ser – PhD student

Suk Lan obtained her biochemistry undergraduate degree and Master’s degree in biology from West Virginia University. She is interested in how environmental factors such as temperature and microbial community play a role in dengue virus transmission.

Email : sjs7721@psu.edu

Nina Dennington – PhD student

Nina received her bachelor’s degree in biology with a minor in wildlife and fisheries sciences from The Pennsylvania State University. Her research is focused on the impact of environmental factors on mosquito fitness and implements experimental evolution to understand how temperature may impact mosquito populations in the future. Her research integrates empirical methods and mathematical modeling to understand how mosquitoes might adapt to a changing climate.

(co-supervised with Matt Thomas)

Email : ninadennington@gmail.com

Matt Jones – Research technician

Matt has over 15 years of experience in scientific research. His expertise includes virology and evolutionary biology, with a focus on molecular techniques. In the McGraw lab he is examining the genetic basis of Wolbachia-mediated pathogen blocking. He is also responsible for cell culture, molecular protocol development and training all new staff and students.

Email : mjj16@psu.edu

Heather Engler – Research technician

After working with lizards for many years, Heather has joined us to work on lizard food – Mosquitoes!

Email : hie1@psu.edu

Makael Harris – Research technician

I received my bachelor’s in Cellular and Molecular Biology- Medical track at the University of West Alabama.  I am interested in public health, specifically epidemiology, maternal child health and infectious disease.

Email : mlh6150@psu.edu

Brianna McNulty – Undergraduate Student

Brianna is a junior majoring in Biology. Her research interests include infectious disease and public health. After graduating, Brianna plans to further her studies in epidemiology.

Email : amd7269@psu.edu

Avi Shende – Undergraduate Student

Avi is a sophomore majoring in Economics, minoring in biology, and on the pre-medicine track. His interests within healthcare are primarily infectious diseases and pre-hospital emergency medicine. Avi plans to go to medical school after he completes his undergraduate degree.

Email : ars6920@psu.edu

Anastacia Diaz – Undergraduate Student

Anya is very interested in Wolbachia and the intricacies of using it to prevent more mosquito-borne viruses/outbreaks…along with expanding her knowledge of mosquitoes.

Email : amd7269@psu.edu

Recent past members of the McGraw lab – Current employment

Dr Heverton Dutra (Postdoc) – Research Scientist, Sherlock Biosciences

Austin Mejia (master’s student) – PhD student, Colorado State

Dr Leah T. Sigle – (Postdoc) – parenting

Dr Mario Novelo (PhD student) – Vector Control Officer, Sacramento-Yolo Mosquito & Vector Control

Suzanne Ford (Postdoc) – Masters program in psychology Oxford University

Cassandra Koh (PhD student) – Postdoc Pasteur Institute Paris

Eric Caragata (PhD student) – Assistant Professor University of Florida

Andrew Turley (PhD student) – Queensland Museum

Henry Ye (PhD student) – Sales & Technical Support Bioneer

Hilaria Amuzu (PhD student) – Senior research scientist CSL Behring

Gerard Terradas (PhD student) – Postdoc Penn State

Rose Herbert (PhD student) – Teaching Assistant Monash University

Emily Kerton (Research assistant) – Research Assistant Latrobe University

Luis Jimenez (Honors student) – Research Assistant Monash University

Michelle Audsley (Postdoc) – Postdoc Monash University

Joash Lake (Undergraduate) – PhD Student University of Chicago

Alison Carrasco (Research Assistant) – Clinical Research Associate Avance Clinical

Bradley Borges (Research Assistant) – Medical Student Melbourne

Jim Griffiths (Research Assistant) – Masters student University of Calgary