Dr. Ann Tate is an Assistant Professor in the Vanderbilt University Department of Biological Sciences. Her research focuses on understanding reciprocal ecological and evolutionary feedbacks between hosts and parasites, using a combination of theoretical and empirical approaches to zoom back and forth between the molecular details and the population level processes. Before moving to Vanderbilt Dr. Tate was a USDA NIFA postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Biology and Biochemistry at the University of Houston, mentored by Tim Cooper. She completed her Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Princeton University, and received her B.S. from Rice University.
Favorite childhood cereal?
Cinnamon Toast Crunch
When you were 5, what did you want to be when you grew up?
How/When did you decide to become a scientist?
Age 7 - My sister had heart surgery and I was fascinated that hearts could go wrong.
How long have you been at Vanderbilt?
I've been at Vanderbilt University for 4 years!
What does your lab do/study?
Evolutionary immunology and disease ecology: Why are immune systems structured the way they are (with all their costs and benefits), and how does natural immunological variation influence disease transmission?
What is one topic in your field that you are excited about right now?
The age structure of immune responses - Why are infants born with weak ones? Why do immune systems senesce? How does early life exposure to infection influence your ability to battle new infections much later in life?
One tip for striking a good work-life balance.
An exercise routine and a dog: Both force you to step away from work and focus on other things!
What is a good socially distanced activity to do in Nashville during the fall/winter?
Walking the paths in Shelby Bottoms - last year around this time, bright red mosquito ferns had turned the bogs a brilliant red!
Current lab members:
Ann Tate, Ph.D.
Siqin Liu (RAII)
Stephanie Birnbaum, Ph.D. (Postdoc)
Justin Buchanan, Ph.D. (Postdoc)
Nora Schulz, Ph.D. (Postdoc)
Justin Critchlow (Grad Student)
Destane Garrett (Grad Student)
Thi Ngo (Grad Student)
Md Sadequr Rahman (Grad Student)
Ana Torres (Undergraduate)
Carly Stewart (Undergraduate)
Katherine Zhong (Undergraduate)
Engage with Dr. Tate: