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Christie Wilcox, PhD

Christie was a well-established science blogger and writer when she was awarded a PhD in Cell and Molecular Biology with a specialization in ecology, evolution and conservation biology from the University of Hawai‘i in 2014 for her research on the genetics of lionfishes. A short two years later, she published her debut book Venomous: How Earth’s Deadliest Creatures Mastered Biochemistry, which received widespread acclaim, and after that, she fully left academia behind and established herself as a science writer and editor. She joined The Scientist in 2021 as newsletter editor and left as senior editor in 2023. She is a member of the Author’s Guild, the Northwest Science Writers Association, and the National Association of Science Writers

Articles by Christie Wilcox, PhD
A California Chinook Salmon Jumps into a waterfall during spawning season
Geneticists Light Up Debate on Salmon Conservation
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Feb 1, 2023 | 10+ min read
Splitting Chinook salmon into two groups based on their DNA could aid conservation efforts. But some researchers argue that this would be a misuse of the data.
Infographic comparing the fall and spring salmon runs
Infographic: An Incredible Journey
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Feb 1, 2023 | 1 min read
Chinook make their way up the Klamath River every year, but fewer and fewer arrive in the spring.
Timeline summarizing a series of petitions filed about the Chinook salmon
Timeline: An Extended Battle
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Feb 1, 2023 | 3 min read
Various concerned groups have been petitioning NOAA Fisheries to list spring-run Chinook salmon in Oregon and Northern California for over a decade.
composite of images from favorite posts
Our Favorite Genetics Stories of 2022
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Dec 22, 2022 | 4 min read
This year’s stories highlight the expanding versatility of genetic techniques and the increasing utility of such research in all life science fields.
A fishing cat with a fish in its mouth
Genome Spotlight: Fishing cat (Prionailurus viverrinus)
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Dec 22, 2022 | 5 min read
A high-quality reference genome for this vulnerable feline may help scientists understand why they’re so prone to transitional cell carcinoma in captivity.
A lobed leaf next to a rounded leaf, both from the same Boquila trifoliolata vine
Can Plants See? In the Wake of a Controversial Study, the Answer’s Still Unclear
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Nov 30, 2022 | 10+ min read
A tiny pilot study found that so-called chameleon vines mimicked plastic leaves, but experts say poor study design and conflicts of interest undermine the report.
A Nile rat sitting atop fruits
Genome Spotlight: Nile Rat (Avicanthis niloticus)
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Nov 23, 2022 | 4 min read
A reference sequence for this emerging model organism will facilitate research on type 2 diabetes and the health effects of circadian rhythm disruption.
A tetraplegic patient navigates a thought-controlled wheelchair
Tetraplegic Patients Take Mind-Controlled Wheelchair for a Spin
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Nov 18, 2022 | 2 min read
The mobility device interprets its paralyzed user’s thoughts to steer through cluttered spaces, a study reports.
Primatologists Judith Masters and Fabien Génin
Primatologist Pair Murdered in South African Home
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Nov 16, 2022 | 3 min read
Judith Masters and Fabien Génin had both recently retired from the University of Fort Hare after celebrated careers researching lemurs and their kin.
Paleoecologist Jacquelyn Gill sitting next to museum collection bones
New NAS Awards Honor Science Communication in “Post-Truth World”
Christie Wilcox, PhD | Oct 27, 2022 | 7 min read
The Scientist speaks with paleoecologist Jacquelyn Gill, who won one of the 24 awards recognizing efforts to communicate scientific issues to the general public.