This week EEB welcomes Dr. Fran Bonier from the Department of Biology, Queens University:
Correlates, causes, and consequences of individual variation in glucocorticoids
Glucocorticoid hormones regulate a wide array of physiological functions, behaviours, and life history traits and are critical mediators of adaptive responses to an organism’s social and physical environment. Circulating glucocorticoid concentrations can vary enormously both among and within individuals. In our research, we have sought to understand the causes and consequences of this individual variation through observational studies to describe natural patterns and hormone and environmental manipulation experiments to identify causal relationships. I will synthesize our findings across several of these studies in an effort to illustrate emerging common themes as well as contradictory results. I will also discuss the strengths and limitations of observational and experimental approaches to studying glucocorticoid actions, and describe important, unanswered questions that we are seeking to address in future work. Overall, our findings contribute to the growing appreciation of glucocorticoid hormones as critical, but context-dependent regulators of responses to diverse challenges.
The EEB Seminars run weekly, on Thursdays, in the EEB Lounge of the BioSciences Complex, Room 4338, from 12:30-1:30pm. Light refreshments are served starting at 12:15.