Mahmoud El-Saadi, a master’s student in Biology is investigating possible links and mechanisms between insect’s gut and immune activation after being exposed to low temperatures.

“If bacteria are finding their way out of the gut and into the body, the resulting infection may contribute to cold-induced injuries and explain the immune activation,” explained El-Saadi.

El-Saadi’s research has important implications as the geographical distribution of insects heavily relies on their ability to tolerate low temperatures. “By better understanding how insects are affected by low temperatures, we can better predict the spread of different insect species in different regions of the world,” said El-Saadi.