Megan Barron

Ph.D. Graduate | mebarron@ucsd.edu

Megan Barron is a 6th year Ph.D. student in the Tresguerres lab. Megan grew up in Spotsylvania, Virginia and attended the University of Virginia (UVA), where she received her Bachelor’s (BS) degree in Biology and a minor in French. As an undergrad, she completed two semesters of independent research, and was also a member of UVA’s synthetic biology team. Megan enjoys teaching, and helped co-teach a seminar in Synthetic Biology and peer teach Introductory Molecular Biology labs. After graduation, she briefly interned abroad before moving to San Diego in the fall to begin her doctoral study. In her spare time, Megan enjoys playing the ukulele (poorly), running (slowly), and backpacking/camping.

Research Interests:

  • mechanisms for sensing acid/base disturbances
  • regulation of intracellular pH
  • physiology of marine invertebrates (corals & oysters)
  • mechanisms behind calcification
  • potential harmful and beneficial impacts of Ocean Acidification

She is currently studying the physiology of corals. Her project investigates the genes and proteins that may be involved in acid/base sensing, intracellular pH regulation, and calcification. Through her project, she hopes to better understand and predict the capacity of these marine calcifiers to handle projected changes in ocean chemistry.  Her focus is on soluble Adenylyl Cyclase (sAC), a bicarbonate-sensing enzyme that converts ATP into cAMP and may be involved in pathways affected by Ocean Acidification.

While at SIO, Megan has tutored local high school students and has mentored a middle school student through the SPAWAR/GetMagic collaboration (a program that encourages girls who are interested in STEM fields). She also assists with the National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB), training local teams in preparation for the Grunion Bowl and providing assistance during the competition itself. However, her favorite volunteer experiences involve giving aquarium tours to visiting kids- they go absolutely crazy at the tide pool “touching” tank and it’s hillarious.

Megan has been awarded the UCSD / SIO Regents Fellowship (2011 – 2012) and the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship (2012 – 2015).