The Gordon Lab


Deborah M. Gordon

Professor, Department of Biology

Senior Fellow, Woods Institute for the Environment

dmgordon at stanford dot edu

Biplabendu (Billu) Das (postdoc)

Biplabendu (Billu) Das loves everything about ants. For his PhD research, Billu studied the role of circadian clocks in ant behavioral plasticity and in parasite-induced changes to host behavior (using the so-called "zombie-ants"). Billu is using harvester ant colonies as a model organism to study the behavioral and neurological mechanisms that regulate age-associated changes to circadian rhythms. Billu is also passionate about teaching workshops on R programming for reproducible data analyses and visualization.

Katie Fiocca (postdoc)

Katie has a broad interest in understanding how nutritional and chemical ecology shape behavior in animal systems. Working with the Gordon and O’Connell labs at Stanford, she hopes to better characterize prey specificity of poison frogs, and to understand whether toxicity of their ant prey influences prey selection, especially in the face of globally declining arthropod diversity and abundance. Outside of the lab she enjoys cooking, traveling, and trying new things.


Contact email:

Mila Pamplona (grad student)

Mila Pamplona (she/her) is passionate about circadian rhythms and collective behavior in ants. During her master's in Brazil, Mila studied the daily rhythms of foraging and leafcutting activities on colonies of leafcutter ants, performing phase shifts experiments. For her PhD research, she is interested in combining ecology and physiology to further explore questions about collective behavior in ants and their biological rhythms. Mila is also passionate about community engagement and science outreach. Her podcast "Charlando" tries to bring science and academia closer to the Brazilian society.

Max Madrzyk (lab tech)

Max is broadly interested in the fitness consequences associated with species interactions. Max received his B.S. at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) where he studied individual variation in exploratory behavior in Argentine Ants (Linepithema humile). In his free time, Max enjoys climbing, backpacking, snowboarding, and basically anything that gets him outdoors.


Graduate students


Alberta Antstein
Alberta Antstein

Winner, "Best Use of Basic Science"

Pumpkin Fest 2008