Natalie Karouna-Renier, Ph.D.

Biography

Natalie is a Research Ecologist and leader of the Molecular Toxicology Laboratory at USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center. Her expertise and research focus on understanding, detecting, and predicting the effects of environmental stressors on wildlife using genomic, transcriptomic, metabolomic, endocrine, and biochemical tools. The lab specializes in identification and application of novel biomarkers for assessing ecosystem health.

Research Interests:

Current research projects in Natalie’s lab focus on immune system changes and susceptibility to disease in birds exposed to environmental contaminants; alterations in gut microbiomes and antibiotic resistance gene pools in birds exposed to urban and agricultural contaminants; hazard and toxicity of neonicotinoid pesticides to terrestrial species; and health status of wild birds exposed to contemporary contaminants (PFAS and novel flame retardants). 

Education/Training:

  • PhD in Biology from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY
  • MS in Toxicology from the University of Maryland
  • BS in Biology from Colgate University, Hamilton, NY