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Becky Williams

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Chemical Ecology, Ecology, Teaching, Toxin, Uintah Basin, Tetrodotoxin

Associate Professor - Biology Department

Assistant Professor

Contact Information

Office Location: USU Uinta BasinBEERC 221B
DialPhone: (435) 722-1787
SendEmail: becky.williams@usu.edu


Educational Background

PhD, Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley, 2008
Distribution, ontogenetic profile, and anti-predator efficacy of tetrodotoxin in two species of blue-ringed octopuses (Hapalochlaena lunulata and H. fasciata).
MS, Biology, Utah State University, 2003
The behavioral and chemical ecology of a predator that consumes toxic prey.
BS, Biology, (Environmental), Utah State University, 1999


Teaching Interests

Scientific Teaching Chemical Ecology Evolutionary Biology Ecology, Field Ecology Toxicology Mammalogy, Ornithology

Research Interests

Chemical Ecology Behavioral Ecology

Awards

National Academy Education Fellow in the Life Sciences, 2013

Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the National Academies

Faculty Research of the Year, 2013

Utah State University Uintah Basin

Performance Recognition Award, 2012

Utah State University

Diversity Project Stipend, 2011

Indonesian Biodiversity Research Center

On the Spot Award, 2007

Great Basin National Park

Best Student Paper Award, 2006

Malacological Society of Australasia

Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor for 2004-2005, 2005

Department of Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley

Claude E. ZoBell Scholarship, 2000

College of Science, Utah State University

E. L. & Inez Waldron Biotechnology Fund Scholarship, 2000

Utah State University

Outstanding Student in the Department of Biology , 1999

Department of Biology, Utah State University

Tracey Storer Award , 1999

American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists

Tuition Waiver, 1999

College of Science, Utah State University

Chancellor’s Scholarship, 1993

University of Alaska, Fairbanks

Publications - Abstracts

    Publications - Books & Book Chapters

      * Has not been peer reviewed

      Publications - Fact Sheets

        * Has not been peer reviewed

        Publications - Curriculum

          * Has not been peer reviewed

          Publications - Journal Articles

            Academic Journal

          • Stokes, A.N, Williams, B.L, French, S., (2012). An improved competitive inhibition enzymatic immunoassay method for tetrodotoxin quantification.. Biological Proceedures Online, 12:14, 3. doi: 10.1186/1480-9222-14-3
          • Williams, B.L, Charles, H.T, Brodie, E.D, Edmund, B.D, (2012). Predators usurp prey defenses?: toxicokinetics of tetrodotoxin (TTX) in common garter snakes after consumption of rough-skinned newts.. Chemoecology, doi: 10.1007/s00049-011-0093-3
          • Williams, B.L, Vanessa, L., Christine, H.L, Roy, C.L, (2011). Chemical defense in pelagic octopus paralarvae: Tetrodotoxin alone does not protect individual paralarvae of the greater blue-ringed octopus (Hapalochlaena lunulata) from common reef predators.. Chemoecology, 21:3, 131-141. doi: 10.1007/s00049-011-0075-5
          • Williams, B.L, Charles, H.T, Brodie, E.D, Roy, C.L, (2011). Ontogeny of tetrodotoxin levels in blue-ringed octopuses: Maternal investment and apparent independent production in offspring of Hapalochlaena lunulata.. Journal of Chemical Ecology, 37:1, 10-17. doi: 10.1007/s10886-010-9901-4
          • Williams, B.L, Hanifin, C.T, Brodie, E.D, Caldwell, R.L, (2011). Ontogeny of tetrodotoxin levels in blue-ringed octopuses: maternal investment and apparent independent production in offspring of Hapalochlaena lunulata.. Journal of chemical ecology, 37:1, 10-7.
          • Williams, B.L, Hanifin, C.T, Brodie, E.D, Brodie III, E.D, (2010). Tetrodotoxin (TTX) affects survival probability of rough skinned newts (Taricha granulosa) faced with TTX-resistant garter snake predators (Thamnophis sirtalis).. Chemoecology, 20:4, 285-290. doi: 10.1007/s00049-010-0057-z
          • Williams, B.L, (2010). Behavioral and chemical ecology of marine organisms with respect to tetrodotoxin.. Marine Drugs, 8:3, 381-398. doi: 10.3390/md8030381
          • Williams, B.L, Caldwell, R.L, (2009). Intra‑organismal distribution of tetrodotoxin in two species of blue‑ringed octopuses (Hapalochlaena fasciata and H. lunulata). . Toxicon, 54:3, 345-353. doi: 10.1016/j.toxicon.2009.05.019
          • Joseph, M.R, Williams, B.L, Sheil, C.A, Mulcahy, D.G, (2005). Systematics of the Bufo coccifer Complex (Anura: Bufonidae) of Mesoamerica. Scientific Papers of the Natural History Museum of the University of Kansas, 38, 1-27.
          • Brodie III, E.D, Feldman, C.R, Hanifin, C.T, Motychak, J.E, Mulcahy, D.G, Williams, B.L, Brodie, E.D, (2005). Evolutionary response of predators to dangerous prey: parallel arms races between garter snakes and newts involving tetrodotoxin as the phenotypic interface of coevolution.. Journal of Chemical Ecology, 31:2, 343-355. doi: 10.1007/s10886-005-1345-x
          • Williams, B.L, Brodie, E.D, Brodie III, E.D, (2004). A resistant predator and its toxic prey: persistence of newt toxin leads to poisonous (not venomous) snakes.. Journal of Chemical Ecology, 30:10, 1901-1919. doi: 0098-0331/04/1000-1901/0
          • Williams, B.L, Brodie, E.D, Brodie III, E.D, (2003). Coevolution of deadly toxins and predator resistance: Self-assessment of resistance by garter snakes leads to behavioral rejection of toxic newt prey.. Herpetologica, 59:2, 155-163.
          • Mulcahy, D.G, Cummer, M.R, Mendelson III, J.R, Williams, B.L, Ustach, P.C, (2002). Status of two bufonid frogs and evaluation of their distributional records in the Northeastern Bonneville Basin with a new county record in Idaho. . Hepetological Review, 33:4, 287-289.
          • Professional Journal

          • Howard, J.H, Williams, B.L, Breen, M., Nishiguchi, M.K, (2016). Genomics of an environmentally-transmitted symbiosis: newly sequenced Vibrio fischeri genomes from different host squids and geographic locations.. Vie et Milieu, 65:4, 187-200.
          • Williams, B.L, Powers, L.P, Garner, M.M, (2016). A pufferfish (Tetradon nigroviridis) available in the common pet-trade harbors lethal concentrations of tetrodotoxin: a case study of TTX poisoning in a Cuvier’s Dwarf Caiman (Paleosuchus palpebrosus).. Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine

          * Has not been peer reviewed

          Publications - Literary Journal

            * Has not been peer reviewed

            Publications - MultiMedia

              * Has not been peer reviewed

              Publications - Technical Reports

                * Has not been peer reviewed

                Publications - Translations & Transcripts

                  Publications - Other

                    * Has not been peer reviewed

                    Scheduled Teaching

                    BIOL, NR 2220 - General Ecology, Fall 2016

                    BIOL 5580 - Mammalogy, Fall 2016

                    BIOL 5800 - Undergraduate Research, Summer 2016

                    BIOL 5560 - Ornithology, Spring 2016

                    BIOL 4750, 6750 - Topics in Biology (Topic), Spring 2016

                    USU 2160 - Tutor Training, Spring 2016

                    BIOL, NR 2220 - General Ecology, Fall 2015

                    BIOL 5580 - Mammalogy, Fall 2015

                    BIOL 4750,6750 - Chemical Ecology, Spring 2015

                    BIOL 3220 - Field Ecology, Fall 2014

                    BIOL 2220 - General Ecology, Fall 2014

                    BIOL 5800 - Undergraduate Research, Fall 2014

                    BIOL 5560 - Ornithology, Spring 2014

                    BIOL 6750 - Scientific Teaching Seminar, Spring 2014

                    BIOL,NR 2220 - General Ecology, Fall 2013

                    BIOL 5580 - Mammalogy, Fall 2013

                    BIOL 5800 - Undergraduate Research, Fall 2013

                    BIOL 4750 - Introduction to Medical and Molecular Toxicology, Spring 2013

                    BIOL 5560 - Ornithology, Spring 2013

                    BIOL 5560 - Ornithology, Spring 2013

                    BIOL 4750 - Topics in Biology (Topic), Spring 2013

                    BIOL/NR 2220 - Ecology, Fall 2012

                    BIOL 3220 - Field Ecology, Fall 2012

                    BIOL 3220 - Field Ecology, Fall 2012

                    BIOL,NR 2220 - General Ecology, Fall 2012

                    BIOL 1620 - Biology II, Spring 2012

                    BIOL 5250 - Evolutionary Biology, Spring 2012

                    BIOL,NR 2220 - General Ecology, Fall 2011

                    BIOL 5580 - Mammalogy, Fall 2011

                    BIOL 4750 - Science Issues in Business, Summer 2009

                    BIOL - General Biology, Utah Valley University, Spring 2009

                    BIOL 4750 - Special Topics in Ecology and Biodiversity, Summer 2008


                    Graduate Students Mentored