Paasch, Amber main content.

Amber Paasch

Amber Paasch, PhD Student at the Museum's Richard Gilder Graduate School. Background shows specimen containers and other lab material on tables.

PhD Student, Richard Gilder Graduate School


2013–present Ph.D. Candidate - Comparative Biology, Richard Gilder Graduate School at the American Museum of Natural History. Dissertation topic: Genetic and molecular characterization of phagocytosis in single celled
green algae; Advisor: Eunsoo Kim. (anticipated graduation August, 2017)

2011–2013 M.S. Biology, California State University, Los Angeles. Decoupling of sex and genetic diversity in the Mojave Desert moss Syntrichia caninervis; Advisor: Kirsten Fisher.

2005–2011 B.S. Biology, California State University, Los Angeles. Development of microsatellite markers to enable population assessment of genetic diversity in Syntrichia caninervis; Advisor: Kirsten Fisher. Comparative genomic variation in the Populus ligno-cellulosic pathway for incorporation into a hybridization project for biofuel; Advisor: Stacey Thompson.

Research Interests

Amber Paasch is interested in deep eukaryotic evolution, particularly the evolution of photosynthesis in the group that contains green algae and land plants. Amber conducts research on microscopic green algae that eat bacteria as a food source and uses them as a model for studying plastid acquisition. Eating is a novel trait in green algae, which were previously thought to rely solely on photosynthesis for nutrition. Amber uses techniques in genomics, electron microscopy, and experimental biology, to study the evolutionary history of bacterial ingestion in green algae and the role of this trait in plastid genesis.



Teaching Experience

  • Systematics, Summer 2014 (AMNH)
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology Lab, Summer 2013 (CSULA)
  • Introductory Biology 100C Lab, Spring 2013 (CSULA)
  • Upper Division Ecology Lab, Spring 2013 (CSULA)
  • Introductory Biology 100A Lab, Winter 2013 (CSULA)
  • Introductory Biology 100B Lab, Winter 2013 (CSULA)
  • Upper Division Ecology Lab, Winter 2012 (CSULA)
  • Upper Division Ecology Lab, Spring 2012 (CSULA)
  • Plant Biology Lab, Fall 2012 (CSULA)
  • General Biology Lab, Winter 2013 (CSULA)