B. Sipley collecting benthic inverts in IRL


Breanna N. Sipley

Cellular & Molecular Biosciences Graduate Fellow
Auburn University


Ph.D. Student in Biology
Halanych Lab
Auburn University

B.S. in Zoology 2013
Summa cum laude
University of Florida

Honors Thesis: Developing genetic markers to infer phylogenetic relationships in the sea cucumber genus Opheodesoma

Research Interests:

Emergence & maintenance of marine biodiversity, phylogenomics of marine invertebrates, genetic basis of symbiosis



In preparation.

Research Presentations

2015: Sipley, B.N.; Michonneau, F.; Paulay, G. Genetic markers reveal surprisingly low genetic variation in the sea cucumber genus Opheodesoma. SEPEEG, Eatonton, GA. Oral presentation.

2014: Sipley, B.N.; McKeon, C.S. Ecological drivers of benthic community assemblages in the St. Lucie Estuary & Southern Indian River Lagoon. Smithsonian Seminar, Smithsonian Marine Station, Fort Pierce, FL. Oral presentation.

2013: Sipley, B.N.; Michonneau, F.; Paulay, G. Developing genetic markers to infer phylogenetic relationships in Opheodesoma. Undergraduate Research Symposium, UF. Oral presentation.

2010: Sipley, B.N.; Julian, D. Combined salinity stress & simulated oil exposure on metabolic rate in Mercenaria mercenaria. REU Chalk Talk, Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory, Salsbury Cove, ME. Oral presentation.

Awards and Fellowships

2016: Doctoral Graduate Research Fellowship, Cellular and Molecular Biosciences, Auburn University

2016: SUSiE-Daybrook Foundation Fellowship

2015: Best Oral Presentation, SouthEastern Ecology & Evolutionary Genetics (SEPEEG)

2014: Smithsonian Institution Internship Award, National Museum of Natural History

2010: UF-HHMI Science for Life Undergraduate Research Award

2010: NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates Fellowship

2008: Best Paper, Student Science Training Program, UF

Research Cruises

2016: Science Under Sail Institute for Exploration (2 week research expedition sampling corals, establishing research sites, & recording reef photomosaics in Exumas, Bahamas)