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Megan Doldron

Megan Doldron is a native of the beautiful twin Islands of Trinidad and Tobago. She earned her Bachelor’s degree at Hollins University in Roanoke Virginia with a double major in Biology and Dance and a minor in Psychology. She then earned a Masters in Biology Education at North Carolina A&T State University where she was awarded the North Carolina A&T State University Graduate Fellowship 2014-2015. Megan then taught high school Biology for 3 years at Reidsville High where she was awarded Teacher of the Year in her 2nd year. She then decided to return to school and pursued and earned her Master of Science in Biology at North Carolina A&T State University. Her research focused on natural alternatives such as antioxidant rich plants and how they can reduce the signs of airway inflammation and oxidative stress caused by exposure to dust from swine confinement facility. She is currently enrolled in the Ph.D. program where her research is focused on epigenetic effects cannabinoid exposure in the lungs and whole body system using in vitro mono- and co-culture methods and in vivo animal models.


  1. Doldron, M., Jia, Z., Bhandari, RK. Epigenetic Effects of Cannabinoid Exposure on Bronchial Epithelial Cells. Triangle. Second Annual Chromatin and Epigenetics Symposium. December 6, 2018. UNC Chapel Hill
  2. Doldron, M., Jia, Z., Bhandari, RK. 58th Annual Meeting of the Society of Toxicology. Epigenetic effects of cannabinoids on bronchial epithelial cells in vitro. March 10-14, 2019. (Megan Doldron, Graduate student, poster presentation)




1. Albert Thayil (2016-2017) : Currently, Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine
2. Mathieu Bouttier (Jan-May, 2017) : Currently, Graduate student at School of Medicine, University  of Montreal, Canada.
3. Tirumala Devi Kodavanti: Currently, NIEHS
4. Madeline Vera: Currently, Graduate student at UC Riverside.
5. Brooke Noah: Looking for admission to Veterinary Program
6. Diamond Hill: TBA
7. Victoria Akers: TBA



Valerie Fricault (Graduated- Fall 2018)

Valerie Fricault is a MS student and aspires to be a college biology instructor.  She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in biology and psychology from Jacksonville University in Florida.  For over 15 years, Valerie worked as a microbiologist for the State of Florida, Milkhouse South, a clinical testing lab, and Molecular Rx, a small pharmaceutical company.  She attended Clemson University microbiology graduate classes.  Her graduate research is focused on epigenetic effects of environmental chemical and metal stressors, including nanoparticles on bronchial epithelial cells in vitro.

Fricault, V.J., Crawford, S., Aravamudhan, S., Bhandari, R.K. (2018). Effects of aluminum oxide and cerium oxide nanoparticle exposure on human lung alveolar cells in vitro. (in preparation)

Jacob Cleary (Graduated- Summer 2018)

Jacob holds a Bachelor degree in Biology from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He worked as an undergraduate researcher with Dr. Parke Rublee and as a Research Assistant with Dr. Gideon Wasserberg at the Department of Biology before joining the Bhandari Research Group. He is currently enrolled for a MS program and undertaking a research project focused on transgenerational effects of embryonic Atrazine exposure in adult medaka. Jacob is examining transgenerational phenotypic changes in medaka at the molecular, morphological, physiological, and behavioral level.

Cleary, JA; Tillitt, DE, vom saal, FS; Nicks, DK; Claunch, R; and Bhandari, RK. (2018). Transgenerational inheritance of atrazine-induced reproductive dysfunction by the third generation of medaka fish (Oryzias latipes). Submitted to Scientific Reports
Cleary, JA; Tillitt, DE, vom saal, FS; and Bhandari, RK. (2017). Atrazine-induced transgenerational molecular changes in the brain of medaka fish (Oryzias latipes). in preparation

Cleary, AJ; Tillitt, DE, vom saal, FS; and Bhandari, RK. Transgenerational molecular changes in the medaka ovary induced by embryonic exposure to herbicide, Atrazine. 2017 Annual Meeting of Carolinas SETAC. Charleston, SC. May 17-19, 2017. (Platform presentation)
Cleary, AJ; Tillitt, DE; vom Saal, FS, Bhandari, RK. Transgenerational effects of developmental atrazine exposure on medaka fish: Alterations in gene expression. 38th Annual Meeting of the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Minneapolis, MN. November 12-15, 2017. (Poster presentation)
Tillitt, DE; Cleary, AJ; vom Saal, FS; Bhandari, RK.  Transgenerational effects in medaka of developmental exposure to atrazine.  38th Annual Meeting of the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Minneapolis, MN. November 12-15, 2017.
Bhandari, RK; Wang, X, Cleary, AJ; vom Saal, FS; Tillitt, DE.  Medaka as a model for studying transgenerational inheritance of phenotypes and underlying mechanisms. 38th Annual Meeting of the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Sacramento, CA. 11/04-07, 2018.

Chelsea Smith (Graduated- Spring 2018)

Chelsea received her Bachelor of Science degree from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with double minors in Chemistry and Biology. Prior to joining Dr. Bhandari’s lab, Chelsea worked in the Joint Applied Math and Marine Sciences Fluids Lab at UNC Chapel Hill on a project related to the B.P. Oil Spill in 2010. The goal of her current research at UNCG is to determine the developmental and epigenetic effects of direct exposure to herbicides on developing medaka embryos during the period of differentiation of male and female germ cells and to determine which parental line is transmitting these effects to the offspring.



Smith, C.M., Cleary, J.C., Bhandari, R.K. (2018). Developmental and epigenetic effects of  Roundup and glyphosate exposure in medaka, Oryzias latipes. (Submitted to Aquatic Toxicology)

Chelsea M. Smith, Madeline K.M. Vera, Ramji K. Bhandari. Developmental and Epigenetic Effects of Glyphosate and Roundup Exposure in Medaka Embryo. 20th International Symposium on Pollutant Responses In Marine Organisms. Charleston, SC USA. May 19–May 22, 2019.


Xiaohong Song (01/15/2018 – 01/31/2019)

Xiaohong Song, a visiting graduate student and Lecturer from the College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Guilin University of Technology, Guilin, China, completed her 1-year stay in the Bhandari Lab. Her graduate research was funded by National Science Foundation of China and focused on role of miRNAs on medaka development. She completed three projects: a) miRNA expression during maternal-zygotic genome transition in medaka embryo, b) miRNA dynamics during epigenetic reprogramming of primordial germ cells (PGCs, germ line stem cells), and c) effects of epigenetic effects of triclosan exposure during epigenetic programming in medaka embryos. Her findings are novel and all her manuscripts are currently in preparation.

1) Song, X., Wang, X., Bhandari, R.K. (2019). MicroRNA expression during maternal to zygotic genome transition in medaka embryo.
2) Song, X., Wang, X., Bhandari, R.K. (2019). Epigenetic changes in medaka embryo induced by triclosan exposure.
3) Song, X., Wang, X., Bhandari, R.K. (2019). MicroRNA expression dynamics in primordial germ cells of medaka during the window of epigenetic reprogramming.