Dr. Thais Condez

Carleton University (co-supervised with Dr. Hillary Maddin)

Project: Skeleton formation in direct-developing amphibians

Thais is a Brazilian amphibian specialist interested in taxonomy, systematics, and evolution. During her academic trajectory, she studied the Atlantic Forest herps. She has described six new species of direct-developing anurans, all of which were personally collected during her field expeditions to the remote mountains from coastal Brazil. She is really interested in biogeography, the origin of montane diversity, and the evolution of miniaturization in amphibians. As a new postdoctoral fellow, she aims to explore the conservation and novelties in skull bone derivation on direct-developing amphibian evolution.

Funded by NSERC NFRF program


Dr. Shreeharsha Tarikere

Carleton University (co-supervised with Dr. Hillary Maddin)

Project: Genomic basis of direct development in amphibians

Harsha came to Ottawa after a postdoc stint with Dr. Cassandra Extavour at Harvard University, where he looked at the regulatory mechanisms controlling the number of egg-producing structures in fruit fly.  His interest in evolution and specification of organs developed when he was in a college.  After Master's degree in microbiology and biotechnology at Bangalore University,  Harsha pursued PhD at IISER Pune India, using the developing silk moth wings as a model.  Now shifting his focus to vertebrates, Harsha is a versatile and experienced molecular geneticist ready to push many amphibian projects at the Maddin lab, while working closely with members of the Miyashita lab.

Funded by NSERC NFRF program


Graduate Students

Conrad Wilson

Ph.D. Student, Carleton University (co-supervised with Dr. Hillary Maddin)

Project: Evolutionary dynamics of early ray-finned fishes

Originally from Vancouver, Conrad completed a BSc. and MSc. at the University of Calgary. There, he described ray-finned fishes from the earliest Carboniferous of Nova Scotia with a view to better understanding end-Devonian mass extinctions and their consequences. These ray-finned fishes showed a wide range of functional diversity, raising more questions about their evolution. As a PhD student he seeks to investigate the evolution of Palaeozoic fish faunas more broadly. Outside of research, he enjoys mysteries, video games, and running with his dog.

NSERC CGS-D recipient 


Jeffrey Yee

M.Sc. student, Carleton University (co-supervised with Dr. Hillary Maddin)

Project: Mechanisms regulating the timing of limb development in amphibians 

Jeffrey hails from Calgary. He spent his undergraduate years at Mount Royal University and worked as a research assistant in a biomedical lab at the University of Calgary.  Inspired by a longstanding interest in paleontology and the diversity of specialized vertebrate limbs, Jeffrey is broadly interested in the molecular mechanisms that regulate limb development timing and morphology, and the origin of diverse morphologies among limbs. Current work is focused on genes determining limb identity, and their function in synchronously developing amphibian species: Eleuthyrodactlyus coqui and Plethodon cinereus.

Funded by NSERC NFRF program


Undergraduate Researchers

Alexandra Weber

I-CUREUS Fellow, Carleton University

Project: Digital dissection of mutant zebrafish

Alexandra hails from Mississauga, ON. She is a 2nd Year undergraduate student pursuing an honours biology BSC and recently began a minor in earth science, with hopes to open even more opportunities for learning. She is currently collaborating with Gillian Watson (another undergraduate researcher) on the snake project, and is beginning an adventure into the wonderland of CT reconstruction with fish scans done recently around the lab.

Eleanor Spence

Co-op intern, University of Ottawa

Project: Inventory of the repatriated fossils

Like Alexandra, Eleanor came from Mississauga. As a new co-op intern supported by the Mosaic Company, Eleanor will be working with the Palaeobiology section of the Museum of Nature in Winter 2022. She is a third-year undergraduate student at the University of Ottawa, and has previous co-op experiences with Canadian Wildlife Services (on their caribou conservation program).  She will look into Canadian fossil specimens that have been repatriated to the care of the Museum.

Gillian Watson

Undergraduate researcher, the University of Ottawa

Project: Coiling directions in snake embryos

Gillian is a 3rd year undergraduate student from the University of Ottawa.  She is busy contacting collections managers and curators across North America to document coiling in snake embryos in ovo, testing whether this asymmetry varies in frequencies and directions within populations, between species, and across lineages.

Visiting Scholar

Olga Wilk

Mitacs Globalink Scholar, the University of Warsaw

Project: Comparative analysis of sarcopterygian fishes from the Holy Cross Mountains

Funded by Mitacs Foundation, Olga is visiting the lab for Winter 2022.  She is based at the University of Warsaw, Poland, where she obtained BSc and MSc degrees and now works on her PhD.  Olga's professional interest has always revolved around early vertebrates, and has been building a career on the famous Devonian fish fauna from the Holy Cross Mountains.  At CMN, she hopes to examine sarcopterygian fishes from the Canadian Arctic and elsewhere.  Olga has also been collaborating with the Ahlberg lab at Uppsala University.  

Lab Associates 

(Tetsuto serves on their supervisory committees)

Dana Korneisel

PhD candidate, Carleton University

Thesis advisor: Dr. Hillary Maddin

William Matthias

MSc student, University of Ottawa

Thesis advisor: Dr. Emily Standen

Dexter Summers

PhD student, University of Ottawa

Thesis advisor: Dr. Emily Standen

Ryan Lambert

MSc student, University of Ottawa

Thesis advisor: Dr. Marc Ekker

Linfang Han

MSc student, University of Ottawa

Thesis advisor: Dr. Emily Standen

Olivia Vanhaesebroucke

PhD candidate, l'Université du Québec à Rimouski

Thesis advisor: Dr. Richard Cloutier

Lab Alumna

Emily Dyer

Carleton University

Project: Ordovician vertebrate remains from the Ottawa Valley

Emily is a 4th year undergraduate from the Department of Earth Sciences, Carleton University. Using SEM on hard-to-prepare samples, she searches for elusive Ordovician vertebrates that inhabited the ancient waters of National Capital Region – some of the earliest true fishes (the crown-group vertebrates) known from North America.