Laura N.L. Johnson

Laura Johnson Research

I am currently working as a Forensic Analyst for the Wyoming Game and Fish Wildlife Forensics Laboratory


I have a strong passion for conservation biology. I obtained my Bachelors in Science with honors in Zoology at the University of Guelph. I then moved on to obtain my Masters in Science at Saint Mary’s University. There my thesis focused on using molecular profiles to delineate the movement patterns of migratory bats between their seasonal ranges.

At my current position, I work as a Forensic Analyst at the Wyoming Game and Fish Wildlife Forensic Laboratory.

Media Coverage

UW Researchers Lead Study of Chronic Wasting Disease in Mule Deer


August 11, 2021

Diseases affect survival and reproduction in wildlife, but documenting the influence of diseases on evolution in wild populations is challenging. A group of University of Wyoming researchers presents evidence that chronic wasting disease is driving evolution in mule deer.

“We collected samples from mule deer throughout Wyoming, where chronic wasting disease has gradually spread over the past several decades,” says Ernest, the Wyoming Excellence Chair in Disease Ecology in the Department of Veterinary Sciences and the Program in Ecology. “Using this variation in space and time, we found that a single genetic mutation linked to slower disease progression has become more common over time and that individuals with the slow mutation were less likely to test chronic wasting disease-positive, providing evidence of disease-driven evolution in mule deer.”

Did Two Florida Populations of Conehead Termites Arise From a Single Colonization Event?


By John P. Roche, Ph.D., September 30 2019

The conehead termite (Nasutitermes corniger) is an aggressive pest of crops, wooden structures, and forests in 13 countries in Central and South America and on many Caribbean Islands. Only two populations have ever been found in the United States, both on the east coast of southern Florida: one in Dania Beach and one in nearby Pompano Beach. A group of researchers has conducted a genetic analysis of these two populations to test whether or not these populations in the U.S. arose from one colonization event or if the populations arose independently.

Causes I care about