Lindsey joined the lab in the fall of 2012 after completing a B.S. in Environmental Management at theUniversity of Tennessee at Martin. Her general research interests include evaluating soil microbial communities in pasture ecosystems and responses to global climate change. For her M.S. research, Lindsey investigated the seasonal responses of soil microbes and enzyme activities in a hay-managed grassland to predicted increases in temperature and precipitation as part of the UK Climate Change Project. Lindsey successfully defended her M.S. thesis, titled "Soil microbial community response to climate change: Results from a temperate Kentucky pasture" (http://uknowledge.uky.edu/pss_etds/8/), in July 2012, and is now working on her doctorate in the lab.
Lindsey's PhD research began with a focus on the aboveground symbiosis between a cool-season foragegrass tall fescue and a fungal endophyte Neotyphodium coenophialum, and the effects of this symbiosis on soil- and plant-microbial interactions in mixed pasture ecosystems. For her dissertation research, she is currently investigating the effects of this tall fescue: endophyte symbiosis on three key soil- and plant-microbial interactions: 1) nitrogen fixation dynamics of both neighboring red clover plants and free-living bacterial communities, 2) colonization of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) on roots of three varieties of tall fescue, and 3) further response of AMF colonization to both climate change (increased heat and precipitation) and tall fescue genotype within a single variety. In all of these studies, tall fescue is either endophyte-free, infected with the common strain of Neotyphodium which is toxic to livestock animals, or infected with one of two non-toxic strains of the endophyte.