The Amphibolite Mountains, located in northwestern North Carolina (Watauga and Ashe Counties), are home to many unique plant species. Due to the distinct geology of the area and deep position within the Southern Appalachians, these unglaciated peaks acted as refugia during previous ice ages and today harbor many rare and disjunct species. Small, isolated populations of plants, high on the Amphibolite peaks, are vulnerable to extinction due to a variety of factors (for example, climate change, land development, and outdoor recreation). My lab group focuses on documenting this biodiversity and providing local land managers with valuable demographic or genetic data to help develop management plans that ensure the preservation of our state's natural heritage.
Shattelroe MD, Mangum P, Rhode Ward J, and Estep MC. (xxxx) Genetic Diversity and Population Structure of the Forgotten Geum, Geum geniculatum Michaux. Castanea, in review.
Hay NM, Ulrey C, Kauffman G, Murrell ZE, and Estep MC. (2019) The genetic diversity and population structure of Geum radiatum: effects of past augmentation of an endangered hexaploid. Castanea,.
Clark L, Gaglianese-Woody M, and Estep MC. (2019) Development of seventeen microsatellite markers in the federally endangered species Liatris helleri (Asteraceae). Applications in Plant Sciences, 7(7): e1250.
Gillespie EL, Pauley AG, Haffner ML, Hay NM, Estep MC, and Murrell ZE. (2017) Fourteen polymorphic microsatellite markers for a widespread limestone endemic, Carex eburnea (Cyperaceae: Carex sect. Albae). Applications in Plant Sciences, 5(8):1700031. doi: 10.3732/apps.1700031.
Hamstead JW, Snider BL, Oaks R, Fitzgerald E, Woodward J, Teat A, Hay NM, Estep MC, and Murrell ZE. (2015) Sixteen polymorphic microsatellite markers for the federally threatened species, Hexastylis naniflora (Aristolochiaceae), and co-occurring congeners. Applications in Plant Sciences, 3(7) doi: 10.3732/apps.1500033.
Title: Associate Professor , Director, Biology Honors Program , Evolutionary Genetics and Genomics
Department: Department of Biology
Email address: Email me
Phone: (828) 262-8058