Biology & Marine Biology

Faculty & Staff

SFausett.jpgSarah Fausett, Lecturer

Ph.D. Cell Biology, Duke University, Durham, NC 2013
B.S. Biology, Central Michigan University, Mount Pleasant, MI 2007
Modular Unit R23 2302| (910)962-0566|601 South College Road, Wilmington, NC 28403-5915 |

Research Interests

Reproduction is at the heart of biology and evolution. After all, if you can’t successfully reproduce, your genes are toast! But reproduction is a highly energy intensive endeavor, and it turns out that most organisms seem to balance their need to reproduce with the need to protect and maintain their own bodies against environmental stressors such as oxidation, heat, and UV light. My research uses the nematode model organism, C. elegans, to address this balance, probing the genetic mechanisms that have evolved to regulate it using wild C. elegans isolates in combination genetically-engineered strains. I combine traditional genetics approaches with modern transcriptomics and metabolomics, placing the worms in stressful conditions and pushing them to their energy limits to see how their genes and cells adapt and whether they can grow and reproduce effectively. Ultimately, I aim to discover whether C. elegans’ ability to consume, process, and allocate energy is, in fact, limiting in the context of reproduction and stress. Due to the high conservation of the genes and molecular pathways that regulate energy allocation, the answer to this question is likely to point the way toward lifestyle choices and therapies that will have strong implications for human reproduction, stress resistance, and aging.


Selected Publications

Stevens L, Félix MA, Beltran T, Braendle C, Caurcel C, Fausett SR, Fitch D, Frézal L, Kaur T, Kiontke K, Newton M, Noble L, Richaud A, Rockman M, Sudhaus W, Blaxter M (2019) Comparative genomics of 10 new Caenorhabditis species. Evol Letters, 3(2):217-236

 Fausett SR, Brunet LJ, Klingensmith J (2014) BMP antagonism by Noggin is required in presumptive notochord cells for mammalian foregut morphogenesis. Dev Biol, 391(1):111-124

Fausett SR, Klingensmith J (2012) Compartmentalization of the foregut tube: developmental origins of the trachea and esophagus. WIREs Dev Biol, 1: 184-202. doi: 10.1002/wdev.12

Guo W, Zhang L, Christopher DM, Teng Z, Fausett SR, Liu C, George OL, Klingensmith J, Jin P, Zhao X (2011) RNA-binding Protein FXR2 Regulates Proliferation and Differentiation of Adult Hippocampal Neural Stem Cells by Reducing Noggin Expression. Neuron, 70(5):924-38