Whitney Wong ’21
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York
Undergraduate Advisor: Joshua Rest
Graduate Advisor: William Ratcliff
Wong is a post-baccalaureate in the Ratcliff lab in the School of Biological Sciences at Georgia Tech. She works with a model system called snowflake yeast to study the evolution of multicellularity. Specifically, she examines the role of oxygen-binding proteins in the utilization of oxygen as a resource during the rise of atmospheric oxygen levels in early Earth history, known as the Great Oxygenation Event. This project has the potential to contribute to the bigger picture of how larger, complex multicellular life forms came to be and the importance of oxygen as an environmental parameter in this transition, and to explain other major evolutionary events on Earth. Wong receives support from an NSF Research Experience for Post-baccalaureate Students (REPS) grant for this project.