CV

Benjamin E.R. Rubin

Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics
Princeton University | Princeton, NJ 08544

berubin@princeton.edu
|download|


Education

  • Ph.D., Committee on Evolutionary Biology, University of Chicago, June 2015
  • B.A., Biology, summa cum laude, Cornell University, May 2009

Professional Experience

  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, Dr. Sarah Kocher, Princeton University, August 2015 onward

Research Interests

  • Behavioral genomics of social insects
  • Evolution of mutualistic plant-ants
  • Bacterial endosymbionts of insects
  • Uses of genomic data in phylogenetics

Awards & Activities

  • Field Museum Brown Family Fellowship: 2013-2014
  • NSF Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant: 2013
  • NSF Graduate Research Fellowship: 2010-2013
  • Field Museum Pritzker Lab student research grant: Sprint 2012, 2014
  • Field Museum MiSeq research grant: Spring 2014
  • NAS/IUSSI EntSoc meeting travel award: 2013
  • i5k Community Workshop student travel award: May 2012
  • UChicago Biological Sciences Division travel award: Dec. 2010
  • UChicago Hinds Fund for student research: Spring 2010, 2011, 2012
  • Highest honors for undergraduate thesis: May 2009
  • Explorer’s Club Youth Activity Fund: Summer 2008
  • Cornell Hughes Scholar: Summer 2008
  • Member, Field Museum Women in Science: Jan. 2013 onward
  • Member, The Society for the Study of Evolution: Jan. 2011 onward
  • Member, Entomological Society of America: July 2009 onward

Publications

  • Rubin BER, Moreau CS. 2016. Comparative genomics reveals convergent rates of evolution in ant-plant mutualisms. Nature Communications 7: 12679.
  • Sullam KE, Rubin BER, Dalton CM, Kilham SS, Flecker AS, Russell JA. 2015. Divergence across diet, time and populations rules out parallel evolution in the gut microbiomes of Trinidadian guppies. ISME J 9(7): 1508-22.
  • Rubin BER, Sanders JG, Hampton-Marcell J, Owens SM, Gilbert JA, Moreau CS. 2014. DNA extraction protocols cause differences in 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing efficiency but not in community profile composition or structure. MicrobiologyOpen 3(6): 910-921.
  • Rubin BER, Gibbons SM, Kennedy S, Hampton-Marcel J, Owens S, Knight R, Gilbert JA. 2013. Investigating the impact of storage conditions on microbial community composition in soil samples. PLoS ONE 8(7): e70460.
  • Kautz S, Rubin BER, Moreau CS. 2013. Bacterial Infections across the Ants: Frequency and Prevalence of Wolbachia, Spiroplasma, and Asaia. Psyche 2013: e936341.
  • Rubin BER, Anderson RM, Kennedy D, Palmer TM, Stanton ML, Lovette IJ. 2013. Polygyny in the nest-site limited acacia-ant Crematogaster mimosae. Insectes Sociaux 60(2): 231-241.
  • Moreau CS, Wray BD, Czekanski-Moir JE, Rubin BER. 2013. DNA preservation: a test of commonly used preservatives for insects. Invertebrate Systematics 27: 81-86.
  • Kautz S, Rubin BER, Russell JA, Moreau CS. 2013. Surveying bacterial diversity in ants: comparing 454 pyrosequencing with traditional methods. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 79(2): 525-534.
  • Rubin BER, Ree R, Moreau CS. 2012. Inferring phylogenies from RAD sequence data. PLoS ONE 7(4) e33394.
  • Rubin BE, Makarewich CA, Talaba AL, Stenzler L, Bogdanowicz SM, Lovette IJ. 2009. Isolation and characterization of microsatellite markers from the acacia-ant Crematogaster mimosae. Molecular Ecology Resources, 9, 1212-1214.

Presentations

  • Rubin BER, Moreau CS. Genome-wide rates of molecular evolution are higher in mutualistic plant-nesting ants. Oral Presentation, Entomological Society of America conference November 2014.
  • Rubin BER, Moreau CS. The genetic basis of mutualism in Pseudomyrmex plant-ants. Oral Presentation, International Union for the Study of Social Insects meeting July 2014.
  • Rubin BER, Moreau CS. Genome-wide rates of molecular evolution are higher in mutualistic plant-nesting ants. Oral Presentation, Evolution meeting June 2014.
  • Rubin BER, Moreau CS. The genome of the big-eyed arboreal ant Pseudomyrmex gracilis. Oral presentation, Entomological Society of America conference November 2013.
  • Rubin BER, Moreau CS. The genome of the big-eyed arboreal ant Pseudomyrmex gracilis. Oral presentation, Evolution meeting June 2013.
  • Rubin BER, Kautz S, Moreau CS. The genome of the arboreal ant Pseudomyrmex gracilis. Poster, Entomological Society of America conference November 2012.
  • Rubin BER. Genome evolution in mutualistic plant-ants. Oral presentation, Chicago Area Ant meeting November 2012.
  • Rubin BER. The evolution of plant-ants: genomic and dietary consequences of plant-ant mutualistic behavior. Oral Presentation, Chicago Area Ant meeting September 2011.
  • Rubin BER, Kautz S, Moreau CS. Dietary consequences of plant-ant mutualism. Oral presentation, Entomological Society of America conference November 2011.
  • Kautz S, Rubin BER, Moreau CS. Surveying the microbiome using 454 pyrosequencing: Diversity and putative functions of bacteria in ants. Oral presentation, Entomological Society of America conference November 2011.
  • Rubin BER, Kautz S, Emery VJ, Moreau CS. The evolution of plant-ant mutualism. Oral presentation, Entomological Society of America conference December 2010.
  • Zufan SE, Wray BD, Rubin BER, Kautz S, Moreau CS. Evolutionary histories of bacterial endosymbionts and their herbivorous ant hosts. Poster, Entomological Society of America conference December 2010.
  • Rubin BE, Palmer T, Stanton M, Lovette IJ. Polygyny and competition in the acacia-ant Crematogaster mimosae. Poster, Entomological Society of America conference December 2009.
  • Rubin BE, Lovette IJ. Colony structure of an African acacia-ant. Poster, International Society for Behavioral Ecology conference August 2008.

Invited Talks

  • Rubin BER, Plant-ant mutualism alters genome evolution but not symbiotic bacterial communities. Icahn Laboratory Seminar, Princeton University December 2015.
  • Rubin BER, The impact of mutualism on genome evolution in plant-ants and their endosymbionts. Molecular Evolution in Social Insects: Insights from the Synergy of Natural History, Diversity, and Genomics symposium at the Entomological Society of America conference November 2015.
  • Rubin BER, Convergent selection and rates of evolution in mutualistic plant-ants.  Academia Sinica October 2014.
  • Rubin BER, Convergent selection and rates of evolution in mutualistic plant-ants. Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology October 2014.
  • Rubin BER, Genome evolution in mutualistic plant-ants. Ecology and Macroevolution seminar, EAWAG, Swiss Institute for Aquatic Science May 2013.
  • Rubin BER, Kautz S, Moreau CS. Dietary consequences of plant-ant mutualism on endosymbiont communities. Pierce Lab Seminar, Harvard University January 2012.

Positions

  • Field Museum Pritzker Lab genomics server administrator: 2011-2015
  • UChicago Committee on Evolutionary Biology student equipment administrator: 2012-2015

Teaching Experience

  • TA, Introduction to Systematic and Phylogenetic Biology: Fall 2011
  • TA Ecology and Evolution of the Desert Southwest field course: June 2010, 2011, 2015
  • TA, Public and Private Lives of Insects: Winter 2011, 2015

Training 

  • Ant collecting trips for graduate research
    • Queensland, Australia: July 2014
    • Santa Rosa National Park, Costa Rica: June 2012
    • Florida Keys, USA: Sept. 2011
    • Tambopata and Allpahuayo-Mishana National Reserves, Peru: Oct. 2010
  • Next-Generation Genotyping-By-Sequencing practical workshop, Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, Illinois: Feb. 2012
  • Next-Gen Sequencing: Data Acquisition and Comparative Genomics, NESCent, Duke University, North Carolina: Aug. 2011
  • Ant Course – taxonomy and field methods, Southwestern Research Station, Arizona: Aug. 2011
  • Ecology of Plant-Animal Interactions in the Tropics OTS field course, La Selva Research Station, Costa Rica: Jan. 2010
  • Undergraduate research of Crematogaster plant-ants, Mpala Research Center, Laikipia, Kenya: July 2008
  • Tropical Field Ecology and Behavior Cornell field course, Mpala Research Center, Laikipia, Kenya: Jan. 2007

Outreach & Service

  • Contributing member of AntWeb.org’s AntBlog forum for addressing insect related questions from the public 2009-2015
  • Mentor or co-mentor of undergraduate and high school interns:
    • NSF REU student Arista Tischner from UIC
    • Katherine McDonnell from St. Francis High School
    • Charles Griggs from Proviso Mathematics and Science Academy
    • NSF REU student William Montag from Bowdoin College
    • NSF REU student Sara Zufan from Depaul University
    • NSF CIRRUS student Ariadne Lumayag from Depaul University
    • Volunteer William Montag from Bowdoin College
    • Alexandra Gray from Deerfield Academy High School
  • Participant in Field Museum members’ night
  • Field Museum Pritzker Lab Facebook featured scientist
  • UChicago Committee on Evolutionary Biology student spotlight
  • Field Museum collection tours for UChicago phylogenetics class and SAIC undergraduate insect biology class
  • Pritzker Lab “Talk to the Scientist Hour” contributor
  • Reviewer for ISME J, Proceedings of the Royal Society B, PLoS ONE, Molecular Ecology, Molecular Ecology Resources, Microbial Ecology, Florida Entomologist, Axios, and Infection, Genetics and Evolution