M.S. Student | soperez@ucsd.edu

IMG_2697Sidney is a 1st year Master’s student in the lab. She grew up in the small town of Menifee, California before attending college at UCSD.  She began participating in undergraduate research as a freshman with her involvement in the program: Initiative to Maximize Student Diversity (IMSD) in Science.  Through this program Sidney participated on projects involving drug discovery efforts toward the treatment of hookworm, as well as exploring the neuronal effects of alcohol on fetuses exposed to alcohol in utero.  In 2011 she took a chance toward change and travelled to Australia for   a Marine Biology program in which she conducted field experiments on a coral reef flat. It was this period in which she realized her fascination with corals.  She returned to the U.S. in search for a lab that focused on coral physiology and was thrilled to discover the Tresguerres lab. In 2013 Sidney graduated from UCSD with a BS in Biochemistry & Cell Biology and she is now pursuing her MS in Biology through UCSD.

Sidney is also a graduate intern at UCSD’s Environmental Affairs department in which she organizes efforts to reduce the University’s water usage and monitors the campus’ storm drains for ocean pollutants.  She hopes to integrate her degrees and experience with environmental affairs to pursue a career in environmental compliance.

In her spare time, Sidney enjoys staying active and enjoying the San Diego sun.

Research interests:

  • Regulation of intracellular and extracellular pH, particularly in the process of calcification in corals
  • The effects of anthropogenic stresses (especially, ocean acidification) on corals

Sidney’s current project involves the characterization of proteins in the early life stages of coral development.  She is exploring proteins potentially involved in the initial calcification process when a coral larvae first settles, metamorphoses into a polyp and begins to rapidly calcify in order to establish itself as a new colony.  Elucidating this process may have implications for understanding how corals will respond to ocean acidification.

Selected Publication:

Barott, K.L., Venn, A.A., Perez, S.O., Tambutte, S.T., Tresguerres, M. 2015. Coral host cells acidify symbiotic algal microenvironment to promote photosynthesis. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 112:607-612. 10.1073/pnas.1413483112