Prof Nia Whiteley
Head of School / Professor in Zoology (Aquatic)
Room: Room 527, 4th floor Brambell Building
Phone: 01248 388080
Web: ResearchGate, Google Scholar
I graduated in Zoology from Hull University in 1982 and spent a year as a trainee in the Science Reference Section, British Library, London, before embarking on a PhD in comparative physiology at the University of Birmingham (1984-88). My PhD work on the physiological responses of lobsters to aerial exposure was followed by several postdoctoral posts investigating molecular control of muscle growth in shore crabs (1988-89), physiological/metabolic responses of freshwater crayfish to natural fluctuations in environmental variables (1989-92), and the molecular/ physiological responses of the giant Antarctic isopod to life at temperatures close to freezing (1992-95). A research visit to the University of British Columbia, Canada, enabled me to collaborate on a project studying ion exchange mechanisms in salmon during seawater acclimation (1995-96), and led to a short term project on stress responses in Antarctic fish (1997) in the Dept of Physiology, Birmingham. After completing a temporary lectureship at the School of Biological Sciences, Birmingham, I moved to Biological Sciences at Bangor in 1998, was appointed Senior Lecturer in 2010, and Reader in 2016.
My research focuses on the physiological and metabolic responses of aquatic organisms to environmental change, including underlying mechanisms and ecological implications. I use laboratory and field based studies to assess the physiological capacity of crustaceans to cope with environmental challenges, such fluctuations in temperature, salinity, O2 and CO2 levels. I specialise in studying acid-base balance, ion regulation, respiratory gas exchange, and protein turnover at different levels of biological organisation. I also examine the metabolic costs associated with such changes, and the repercussions on growth and life history traits. My work on the molecular regulation of muscle function in crustaceans, has led to an examination of changes in muscle genotype in amphipod gammarid crustaceans distributed along natural thermal gradients. Collaborative projects have examined physiological responses of marine invertebrates to elevated CO2 and warming, and the energetic costs of physiological adjustments to elevated CO2 and salinity (Saloa Project). We are currently using transgenerational studies to investigate the energetic costs associated with osmoregulation in marine amphipods.