People

Umut Toprak

Associate Professor,Ph.D, P.I.
+90 (312) 596-1018
utoprak@agri.ankara.edu.tr

Dr. Umut Toprak is an Associate Professor of Entomology at Ankara University, Turkey. Umut completed his PhD at the University of Saskatchewan, Dept. of Biology, Canada in 2011. He started at Ankara University as an Assistant Professor in 2013 and current lead the Molecular Entomology lab which he founded. Umut’s expertise is molecular insect physiology & biochemistry, in particular insect midgut & peritrophic matrices, insect defense physiology against baculoviruses and Bacillus thuringiensis and insect lipid metabolism. He currently serves as the regional ambassador of the Society for Invertebrate Pathology and steering committee member of XII European Congress of Entomology-ECE 2022, which will be held in Hersonissos Crete, Greece, October 17-21, 2022.  Umut currently leads the special issue “From Fat to Fact: Recent Insights on Insect Lipid Metabolism” with Laura Musselman (Binghamton University, State University of New York, USA) in Insect Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, which is planned to be published in Dec, 2020. He also serves as the special issue editor of “Molecular insights into Insect Physiological Systems” in Archives of Insect Biochemistry and Physiology, which is in process and planned to be published in January 2020 Issue of the journal. Another special issue led by Umut “The Peritrophic Matrix: From Past to Future” (Eds: Toprak, U., Wang, P., Smagghe, G.) is in the Journal of Insect Physiology and was recently completed. This SI is currently online in  Volume 119, November-December 2019, 103947,
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022191019303452).

Başak Coşkun

PhD Student
+90 (312) 344-5993 / 1402
basak.coskun@tarim.gov.tr

Başak is a Ph.D. student in Molen Lab and also works at the Plant Protection Central Research Institute in Turkey. She had her Bachelor’s Degree in Plant Protection from Ege University in 2011 and Master of Science in Entomology from Kansas State University in 2017. Her dissertation research focused on the molecular characterization of V-ATPase genes and their function in Aedes aegypti (Diptera). Her Ph.D. research at Molen focuses on understanding RNAi mechanisms in Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata) and its potential usage to control of this pest. In her leisure time, Başak enjoys hiking, insect collecting, gaming, and reading.

Emrah Kayış

PhD Student
+90 (312) 344-5993 / 1119
emrah.kayis@tarimorman.gov.tr

Emrah is an entomologist in Central Plant Protection Research Insitute (CPPRI), and works in several research project on fruit and grapevine pests. He graduated from the Dept. of Plant Protection Department, Ankara University in 2010, and completed his master degree in the same department on control of stored product pests. He is currently a Ph.D student in Molen lab. Emrah worked also as an agricultural counselor on plant protection, as well as identification of pests, and pesticide and fertilizer usage. He has been working in CPPRI since October 2018. Emrah plays several instruments such as bağlama (Turkish authentic instrument), guitar, and violin (at basic level). He likes also to watch movies, swimming and collecting mineral stones.

Gözde Güney

PhD Student
+90 (312) 596-1020
Gozde.Guney@ankara.edu.tr

Gözde received a Bachelor of Science Degree at Ankara University, Faculty of Agriculture, Dept. of Plant Protection, Turkey in June 2016. During her bacherlor years, she started at Molen as an undergrad student and completed also a Master’s Degree on the “Characterization of major proteins involved in the lipid metabolism of the Colorado Potato Beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata” at the same department in July 2019. Gözde has worked and still been working also in various insect-pathology related projects since her bachelor and Master’s years. Gözde has been awarded three scholarships during the course of her studies; the “Mevlana Student Exchange Scholarship (Higher Education Council of Turkey, 2018)”, “Bacterial Division Student Travel Award”, Society for Invertebrate Pathology (2019)” and the “Erasmus Student Exchange Scholarship (European Union, 2018)”. Gözde has also found the chance to work at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Saskatoon, Canada and Max Planck Insitute for Chemical Ecology, Jena Germany as an exchange student during her studies. Gözde is currently a Ph.D. student and conducting her studies through “1001 project scholarship” supported by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey.

Cansu Doğan

MSc. Student
+90 (312) 596-1020
7cansudogan@gmail.com

Cansu received B.S from University of Ankara,  Dept. of Plant protection. She has been studying CPB lipid metabolism & calcium homeostasis since 2017 at the Molecular Entomology Lab under guidance of Dr. Umut Toprak. During her studies, she also found to chance to work as an intern at the Max Planck Institute in Jena, Germany under guidance of Dr. David Heckel and at Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada under guidance of Dr. Dwayne Hegedus and University of Wisconsin-Madison Dept. Of Entomology under guidance of Dr. Russel Groves. Cansu was also an exchange scholar student at University of Bonn and short term exchange  scholar student at Ibaraki University in Japan. Cansu is currently continuing her M.Sc. at Molen and currently working on the organelle dynamics and calcium homeostasis in physiology and disease context such as obesity in Colorado potato beetle. Cansu is a traveler and likes to be on the road, explore new places , cultures and books.

Aslı Erol

MSc. Student
+90 (312) 596-1020
asliierol11@gmail.com

Aslı graduated from the Dept. of Plant Protection Department Ankara University in 2018. She has just started to her MSc education in Molen lab. Aslı conducted an internship in the Insect Toxicology laboratory of Central Plant Protection Research Institute. Aslı has been doing karate for 12 years and is a Turkish National Karate Team Athlete.

Doğa Cedden

Undergrad Student
+90 (312) 596-1020
dogacedden@gmail.com

Doğa graduated from Tevfik Fikret Highschool in 2015 and currently is a bachelor student at Ankara University, Dept. of Plant Protection. Doğa has a deep interest in entomology and has been working at Molen since 2017. Doğa’s research project is on the Colorado potato beetle circadian clock. He had the chance to conduct some of his experiments at Würzburg University, Dept. of Neurobiology and Genetics, Germany through the Erasmus Student Exchange Scholarship (European Union, 2019) he was awarded. Doğa also won the second best student poster in the International Molecular Plant Protection Congress. He is also a undergrad scholar of  “1001 Project” supported by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey. Doğa is willing to continue his studies at Molen by starting a Master’s program.

Sevde Çağıran

Undergrad Student
+90 (312) 596-1020
seyhancagitan@gmail.com

Sevde graduated from Artı Destek High School in Ankara in 2018. During her highschool education, she has had her second year in Gainesville High School in Florida, US, which signifcantly improved her cultural experience and scientific aspects. Sevde got accepted to Ankara University, Faculty of Agriculture, Plant Protection as a high ranking student and was awarded a government scholarship. Sevde improved her international experience by going to Japan in the summer of first year in college through the Local Age Short-term Exchange Program scholarship she was awarded. Sevde is currently in her second year in the college and recently started at Molen Lab. Sevde finds Molecular Biology and Genetics captivating and wants to pursue a career as an academician in the future.

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