Michael R. Strand, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor in the Department of Entomology at the University of Georgia, was elected as Fellow in 2012. He is internationally recognized for his research on parasite-insect host interactions.
Strand was born in Norfolk, Virginia but spent most of his childhood in Texas. He attended Texas A&M University receiving his B.S. in 1980 and Ph.D. in 1985. After a short postdoctoral appointment at Imperial College (UK) funded by a National Science Foundation-North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) fellowship, he accepted a position as an assistant professor at Clemson University. He moved in 1987 to the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he advanced to the position of professor. In 2002, he moved to the University of Georgia where he holds appointments in the Department of Entomology, the Center for Tropical and Emerging Global Diseases, Faculty of Infectious Diseases, and Department of Genetics.
Strand’s primary research interests are in the study of the interactions between insects, parasites and beneficial symbionts. Projects include the characterization of: 1) polydnaviruses and other symbionts associated with parasitic wasps, 2) insect immune defense responses, and 3) the interplay between immunity and reproduction. His laboratory is strongly interdisciplinary with projects that focus on both the molecular and biochemical regulation of physiological processes as well as their effects on insect life history and evolution. He has to date authored or co-authored more than 190 scientific papers, reviews and book chapters. His work has also been supported by a diversity of scientific research agencies including the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation and United States Department of Agriculture.
In addition to his research interests, Strand’s service contributions include appointments on several journal editorial boards, grant evaluation panels, and committees for national and international scientific agencies. Strand has advised more than sixty graduate students and post-doctoral scientists of which many have gone on to successful careers in academia, industry and government. He is also active in classroom teaching at both the graduate and undergraduate level at the University of Georgia. Strand has served the ESA in several capacities including being the 2012 President-elect for the Physiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology (PBT) section. He has been an invited speaker in countries around the world and at various scientific events. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and has received several awards for his work including the 2009 ESA National Recognition Award in Physiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology.