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Biology Home

Arthropods are found from the tops of the highest mountains to the most northerly and southerly pieces of land on earth.

Our Vision is a complete understanding of the mechanisms that allow arthropods to survive and thrive at low temperatures.

Our Mission is to learn cool stuff about arthropods, to share our knowledge, and to train the very best of the next generation of scientists.

We do our research at  levels of organisation from molecular biology to macroevolution and everything in between.  Check out out the research page to learn more, the people page to find out about the Lab's denizens, and the in the media page, the publications page, or Brent's Google Scholar profile to see what we've already finished.

Lab meetings and happenings...

Lab News...

April 2021 - A very fond farewell to Alex Torson, who is moving on to s Research Scientist position at the USDA in Fargo, North Dakota. Watch out for woodchippers, Alex!

April 2021 - Congratulations to Tania Naseer, who passed her proposal assessment!

April 2021 - Congratulations to Arteen, Ayush, and Zoe, who completed very fine (bioinformatics-based) honours theses under the most difficult of circumstances!

January 2021 - The Sinclair lab is recruiting! We're looking for creative, critical-thinking MSc and PhD students to figure out how insects can survive internal ice formation (and maybe slip in a side trip to the Canadian Arctic. Check out the vacancies page for more info.

January 2021 - A farewell has been bidden to Meaghan Carlson (the assister with writing), and we welcome Amanda Lynn Stubley, who will be wrangling writing on the wresearch wrodeo.

August 2020 - Well, about half of us are still at home, and the other half have been slowly getting into the lab. This month we farewell Lyuquon Zhao, who heads back to China (with a new addition to the family!), and Matt Chung (who was a USRA during this disrupted summer, but he'll still be hanging around in the lab!) We welcome Stefane Saruhashi, a new PhD student who joins us after working on Anostrapha thermal biology for her MSc in Brazil, and Tania Naseer, who comes all the way from Oshawa to start a MSc.

April 2020 - The lab has now been working from home for six weeks because of the COVID-19 pandemic. All things considered, we've done pretty well. Meghan has crickets acclimating at home (we can hear them chirping in the background) so we'll still have freeze tolerant crickets to work with when we're allowed back in the lab, and Yanira is keeping an eye on her fly-babies at home too. Jackie is allowed on campus for short periods to monitor her beetles and potato plants. The rest of us are working 100% from home. We meet up on Zoom every day, and it's been a great opportunity to share knowledge about methods, read articles together, and partake of a Friday afternoon 'Quarantini'. We are grateful to all the healthcare and essential workers around the world who are dealing with the crisis, and to our fellow Ontarians who have stayed home and kept the healthcare system from being overwhelmed!

April 2020 - Congratulations to Alyssa Stephens, who has been awarded an NSERC CGS-M masters scholarship!

January 2020 - Welcome to Catalina Fernández, who is visiting us for the term to freeze pepper weevils, and 'welcome' to Kevin Ong, who has officially started an MSc (although he's been around seemingly forever!) Farewell to Aisa Psenicnik, who has gone on to a Masters degree in the Prairies.

November 2019 - Congratulations to Jackie Lebenzon, who shared the President's Prize for best student presentation and Kurtis Turnbull, who shared the President's prize for best student poster at the Entomological Society of Ontario meeting!

October 2019 - Congratulations to Jackie Lebenzon, who won the J.D. Detwiler award for demonstrated excellence in the Biology graduate program!

September 2019 - Welcome to Alyssa Stephens, who has begun an MSc on cricket freeze tolerance.

August 2019 - Welcome to Nasim Amiresmaeili, who has a Western Research postdoc to work on the thermal biology of parasitoids of the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug. She'll be dividing her time between the Sinclair lab and Tara Gariepy's lab at Agriculture and Agri-food Canada.

August 2019 - The lab has been on the circuit! Alex Torson did a great talk at ISEPEP8 in Buenos Aires (where there were many Sinclair lab alumni, including plenary speaker Dr. Caroline Williams and several of her students - which makes them Brent's grandstudents!). Jackie Lebenzon was runner-up for best student presentation at the ICCPB in Ottawa.

May 2019 - Congratulations to Yanira Jiménez Padilla, who has been awarded an Ontario Graduate Scholarship!

May 2019 - The lab had an outstanding showing at the CSZ annual meeting. As well as a wonderful slate of talks and posters from lab members, Meghan Duell was one of three speakers in the Comparative Physiology and Biochemistry symposium, Jackie Lebenzon was runner up in the W.S. Hoar Award finals for best student presentation, and Alex Torson was a finallist in the Presidents' prize for best postdoc presentation. And...everyone had to put up with all week, who was mostly on stage performing his duties as President of the Canadian Society of Zoologists. The Sinclair lab extended family even got together for a photo (see below).

May 2019 - Welcome to Claire Baragar, who joins us as an NSERC USRA student for the summer!

April 2019 - Congratulations to Yanira Jiménez Padilla, who passed her Qualifying exam, and is now a PhD Candidate.

April 2019 - Congratulations to Dr. Susan Anthony, who defended her PhD thesis with flying colours (no revisions required!). You can hear her talk about it on GradCast here. AND, if that weren't productivity enough, she delivered a healthy baby boy not two weeks later! Welcome to the world, little Finnegan!

March 2019 - farewell to Paul Vinu Salachan, who returns to Denmark after a productive six month visit.

March 2019 - Jantina Toxopeus' research on freeze tolerance in spring field crickets was a topic of discussion on CBC... twice!

February 2019 - We only heard about this now, but congratulations to Jackie Lebenzon, who won the best student poster award for the Division of Comparative Physiology and Biochemistry at the SICB meeting in Florida last month!

February 2019 - The polar vortex brought with it a flurry of media attention about whether the cold will kill emerald ash borer (spoiler alert: it probably won't, but Meghan is looking at cold tolerance of the new population in Winnipeg). The Sinclair lab appeared in a few media outlets, including Western News and Bloomberg.

January 2019 - Our very own Jackie Lebenzon was featured in the Western Gazette - read about diapause (and some pesky mammals) here.

January 2019 - Welcome to Sujan Sadekuzzaman and Seun Esan, who began their PhDs with us. Sujan will be applying his formidable molecular biology skills to Gryllus veletis, while Seun will join Team Beetle.

December 2018 - Kurtis Turnbull is now a PhD Candidate, after passing his comprehensive exam with flying colours!

November 2018 - Congratulations to John Ciancio, who defended his MSc on Brown Marmorated Stink Bug last month. His thesis is now available here.  Look out for a super-solid publication on overwintering biology of this species next year!

November 2018 - Our very own Susan Anthony was interviewed about spider overwintering for an article in geek.com!

October 2018 - Welcome to Paul Vinu Salachan, a visiting PhD students who joins us for six months from Aarhus University in Denmark on a Company of Biologists Traveling fellowship.

October 2018 - Congratulations to Kurtis Turnbull, who was jointly awarded the President's Prize for best student presentation at the Entomological Society of Ontario Annual Meeting.

September 2018 - Congratulations to Dr. Jantina Toxopeus, who defended her PhD with flying colours. You can read Jantina's thesis here. Jantina is off to join Greg Ragland's lab as a postdoc at University of Colorado Denver.

September 2018 - Congratulations to Jackie Lebenzon, who was awarded the Malcolm Ferguson Award in Life Sciences!

August 2018 - Welcome to Meghan Duell, who joins us from Arizona State University as a new postdoc.

July 2018 - Congratulations to Yanira Jiménez Padilla, who passed her PhD proposal assessment!

May 2018 - Welcome to Kendra Corral, who is joining us from Mexico for the summer as a MiTACS Globalink intern.

News archive...



Sinclair lab Quizzintinis, February 26, 2021. Top (l-r): Rick Simpson (interloper), Meghan Duell (postdoc), Brent Sinclair (quizmaster), Nasim Amiresmaieli (postdoc), Alex Torson (postdoc), Kurtis Turnbull (PhD); middle (l-r): Zoe Klein (honours thesis), Yanira Jiménez Padilla (PhD); Alyssa Stephens (MSc), Arteen Torabi-Marashi (honours thesis), Kevin Ong (Bionformaticsologist); bottom (l-r): Ollie (interloper), Amanda Lynn Stubley (writing support), Tania Naseer (MSc), Jackie Lebenzon (PhD), Ayush Namboothiri (honours thesis). The team "How many PhDs does it take?" (Meghan, Rick, Nasim, Alex) won a glorious victory which is hereby enshrined upon the Sinclair Lab website for mere mortals to gaze upon in wonder for all eternity*. (*in case you were wondering what the winning team won).

Sinclair lab extended family, Canadian Society of Zoologists, Windsor, ON, May 2019 - Back (l-r): Skye Butterson (MSc, UBC), Sujan Sadekuzzaman (PhD, UWO), Mahmoud El Saadi (undergrad, Carleton), Serita Fudlosid (MSc, Carleton), Kaylen Brzezinski (MSc, Carleton), Hannah Davis (PhD, Carleton), Kevin Ong (undergrad, UWO), Peter Denezis (undergrad, UWO), Alex Torson (postdoc, UWO), Kurtis Turnbull (PhD, UWO), Katie Marshall (PhD UWO '13, now UBC), Meghan Duell (postdoc, UWO); front (l-r): Heath MacMillan (PhD UWO '13, now Carleton), Jantina Toxopeus (PhD UWO '18, now CU Denver), Seun Esan (PhD UWO), Yanira Jiménez Padilla(PhD UWO), Brent Sinclair (denies all responsibility, he's just very lucky to work with these amazing people), Jackie Lebenzon (PhD UWO)