Amy B. Bishell
Biological Science Technician
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Contact Amy B. Bishell
As a Biological Science Technician, Amy works with several scientists in the Durability and Wood Protection unit on projects ranging from wood treatments, to termites, to wood decay fungi. She is currently focused in three broad areas: (1) transferring the extractives from naturally durable wood species to non-durable wood (such as southern pine) and testing for changes in durability against termites and wood decay fungi; (2) metagenomics for identifying the fungi present in wood, soils, leaf litter and termite colonies; (3) studying the ability of wood decay fungi to tolerate and effectively degrade chemically treated wood including the enzymes they may utilize to accomplish this.
- Natural durability
- Wood extractives
- Wood decay fungi
- Soil microbiota
Why This Research is Important
Improving the durability of wood increasees its service life and its capacity for use as a building material, which enhances its value to the U.S. public. Wood is a renewable resource and maintaining forest health requires effective management and efficient utilization of our forest resources.
- University of Wisconsin - Madison, Masters Of Science Plant Pathology Emphasis in Postharvest fruit pathology 2001
- University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point, Bachelor Of Science Biology, Botany Emphasis Minors in Chemistry and French 1998
- Biological Science Technician, USDA-FS-Forest Products Laboratory
2010 - Current
Coordinate and assist in various laboratory and field research activities involving Durability and Wood Protection including white and brown rot fungi, molds and termites. Set up and rate in-ground and above-ground field tests and accelerated laboratory tests for decay and termites. Assisted in development and conduct experiments using molecular protocols for: Identifying wood rot fungi using TRFLP, sequencing and soil metagenomics Pyrosequencing and Gene Expression for bacteria and fungi Fungal protein analysis using Enzyme assays and Western blot
- Research Specialist, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
2006 - 2010
Organized and managed a laboratory for a Faculty member at the Medical College of Wisconsin. Conducted experiments to determine the effect of cadmium on transcription factor Sp1 in mouse kidney and cultured cells using the following techniques: Primary and continuous cell culture Protein and DNA extraction from cultured cells and whole tissue SDS-PAGE, Western blot, and Immunostaining for protein detection EMSA, DNA gel shift assay Chemiluminescence and IR detection of blots Chromatin and protein Immunoprecipitation PCR, Real-time PCR and gel electrophoresis Transformation and transfection for protein overexpression
- Biological Science Laboratory Technician, USDA - ARS
2001 - 2006
Planned, prepared and conducted plant pathology and food safety experiments on postharvest whole and fresh-cut fruits. Used sterile techniques to maintain and prepare working cultures of fungi, yeast, bacteria and bacteriophages. Purchased and organized supplies and chemicals and operated and maintained various laboratory equipment. Recorded and presented data in a form acceptable for publication. Performed the following techniques: Protein and DNA extraction from fungal tissue PCR and gel electrophoresis HPLC/FPLC for protein purification Enzyme activity assays, SDS-PAGE and IEF for protein characterization
- Research Technician, Ocean Spray Cranberries Inc.
1998 - 1999
Coordinated and conducted a project using a micro-encapsulated synthetic pheromone to disrupt the mating of black-headed fireworm on cranberry. Responsible for rearing an insect colony, coordinating spraying schedules and communicating results to several scientists. Conducted a survey of storage rotting fungi in Wisconsin cranberry farms. Isolated and identified fungi, recorded and organized data. Scouted fields for pests and assisted in several other pest control and fruit quality experiments.
Awards & Recognition
- USFS Inspiring Women Award, 2016
Outstanding Leadership Achievement
- Special Congressional Recognition, 2011
GMFAA Partnership/Teamwork Award in recognition of outstanding and invaluable service to the community.
Featured Publications & Products
- Kirker, Grant T.; Bishell, Amy B.; Jusino, Michelle A.; Palmer, Jonathan M.; Hickey, William J.; Lindner, Daniel L. 2017. Amplicon-Based Sequencing of Soil Fungi from Wood Preservative Test Sites.
- Mankowski, Mark ; Hassan, Barbar; Blodgett, Amy; Kirker, Grant T. 2016. Laboratory evaluations of woods from Pakistan and their extractives against Postia placenta and Trametes versicolor.
- Kirker, Grant T.; Blodgett, Amy; Lebow, Patricia. 2015. Laboratory Evaluations of Durability of Southern Pine Pressure Treated With Extractives From Durable Wood Species.
- Kirker, G.T.; Blodgett, A.B.; Arango, R.A.; Lebow, P.K.; Clausen, C.A. 2013. The role of extractives in naturally durable wood species.
- Kirker, Grant T.; Blodgett, Amy; Lebow, Patricia K.; Clausen, Carol A. 2016. Effect of Fungal Competition on Decay Rates in Bicultured Soil Bottle Assays.
- Zelinka, Samuel L.; Kirker, Grant T.; Bishell, Amy B.; Glass, Samuel V. 2020. Effects of wood moisture content and the level of acetylation on brown rot decay.
- Hassan, Babar ; Mankowski, Mark E.; Kirker, Grant ; Ahmed, Sohail ; Bishell, Amy . 2019. Ex-situ performance of extracts from naturally durable heartwood species and their potential as wood preservatives.
- Kirker, Grant ; Bishell, Amy ; Lebow, Stan . 2018. Above and in-ground performance of naturally-durable woods in Wisconsin.
- Zelinka, Samuel L.; Jakes, Joseph E.; Tang, Juliet ; Ohno, Katie , M.; Bishell, Amy ; Finney, Lydia ; Maxey, Evan R.; Vogt, Stefan ; Kirker, Grant T. 2018. Fungal copper interactions in wood examined with large field of view synchrotron-based X-ray fluorescence microscopy.
- Kirker, Grant T.; Bishell, Amy B.; Hickey, William J. 2017. AWPA biodeterioration hazard map revisited.
- Kirker, Grant T.; Bishell, Amy B.; Jusino, Michelle A.; Palmer, Jonathan M.; Hickey, William J.; Lindner, Daniel L. 2017. Amplicon-based sequencing of soil fungi from wood preservative test sites.
- Ohno, Katie M.; Kirker, Grant T.; Bishell, Amy B.; Clausen, Carol A. 2017. Untreated and copper-treated wood soaked in sodium oxalate: effects of decay by copper-tolerant and copper-sensitive fungi.
- Kirker, Grant T.; Clausen, Carol A.; Blodgett, A. B; Lebow, Stan T. 2013. Evaluating Naturally Durable Wood Species for Repair and Rehabilitation of Above-Ground Components of Covered Bridges.
- Kirker, G.T.; Blodgett, A.B.; Lebow, S.; Clausen, C.A. 2013. Transferable Durability: Enhancing decay resistance of non-durable species with extractives from durable wood species.
- Kirker, G.T.; Blodgett, A.B.; Lebow, S.T.; Clausen, C.A. 2012. Above Ground Field Evaluation and GC-MS Analysis of Naturally Durable Wood Species.
- Kirker, G.T.; Blodgett, A.B.; Lebow, S.T.; Clausen, C.A. 2011. Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis of extractives of naturally durable wood.
|Effective utilization of naturally durable wood biomass offers an overlooked source of potential wood protectants|
Forest Service researchers at the Forest Products Laboratory in Madison, Wisc., are evaluating extractives as potential next-generation wood pre ...