Laura Sirot

Laura Sirot

Associate Professor - Biology

Office: Williams 192
Phone: 330-263-2341
Email: lsirot@wooster.edu
Website
CV

Degrees

  • B.S., Univerisity of Michigan 1992
  • M.A., University of Michigan 1993
  • M.Sc., University of Florida 1999
  • Ph.D, University of Florida 2004

Courses Taught

  • BIOL 111: Foundations of Biology
  • BIOL 202: Gateway to Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology
  • BIOL 203: Research Skills for Life Scientists
  • BIOL 323: Natural History of the Invertebrates
  • BIOL 352: Animal Behavior
  • BIOL 399: Plant Insect Interactions
  • BIOL 401: Junior Independent Study Seminar

Interests

My research focuses on animal behavior and understanding why animals do what they do from both mechanistic and evolutionary perspectives. I use techniques from animal behavior, ecology, evolutionary biology, biochemistry, molecular biology, and bioinformatics. One goal of my research is to understand how females and males influence each other’s reproductive success. I am fascinated by all aspects of reproductive behavior, but my main current area of research relates to understanding seminal fluid proteins. Seminal fluid proteins are synthesized by males but then have functions within mated females in a wide-range of species, including humans. In insects, the responses of females to these proteins include increasing egg-laying, storing sperm, and refusing to mate with subsequent males who approach. Very little is known about the mechanism of actions of these proteins. I am very interested in understanding how these proteins have their effects and how they can be used to solve applied problems like pest management and human infertility. A second area of research is on human reproductive biology. We are using evolutionary approaches to understand factors that could affect human fertility. Most recently, I have started a project on mosquito-monkey interactions. This project explores the biting behavior of mosquitoes in Costa Rica and the mosquito repellency of natural products that monkeys rub on their fur.