Krista McCoy

Title: Assistant Professor
Area of Study: Ecological Physiology and Development
Phone: 252-737-2730
Fax: 252-328-4178
Office: Howell S-112
Address: Department of Biology
East Carolina University
Greenville, NC 27858


Ph.D.: School of Natural Resources and Environment, University of Florida, FL

M.S.: Department of Biology, James Madison University, VA

B.S.: Department of Biological Sciences, Old Dominion University, VA

Connect with Us

purple-facebook purple-twitter

Research Interests:

My research aims to understand how environmental conditions (e.g. pollution) influence reproductive development, physiology, and behavior, and to devise ways to reduce the incidence of reproductive abnormalities in wildlife and humans. I use an integrative systems approach that combines field and laboratory methods to investigate the effects of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) across multiple levels of biological organization—from molecules to populations. I ask questions that are conceptually motivated so that my work is general and informative to diverse scientific fields including development, physiology, evolution, ecology, and conservation.

Prospective Students:

I invite applications from highly motivated and organized undergraduate and prospective Masters and PhD students interested in understanding the mechanisms through which endocrine disrupting chemicals disrupt normal development, physiology, and behavior and (or) the implications of those alterations on individual, population, or community level processes.My research program has several foci that are integrative and translational (e.g., apply findings from basic science to enhance human health). Ideally, my new laboratory will consist of happy and engaged students that are interested in wildlife conservation and/or human health.

As an advisor, I believe my role is to teach my students how to think scientifically and with an open mind, and to appreciate science generally so that we can use approaches from many fields to answer big questions and develop broad expertise. I will also help my students communicate what we learn through a variety of media (e.g., manuscripts, presentations, art…). My students must be comfortable giving and receiving constructive feedback.Indeed, giving and receiving criticism is important for advancing knowledge and improving our science. I want my students to be excited to train and collaborate with undergraduates, other graduate students, and post docs.Students will also be expected to attend departmental seminars, excel in classes, teach, and attend weekly laboratory meetings.I look forward to having a happy, intellectually engaged and productive laboratory environment where we will share ideas, work through experimental designs, analyze data sets, and critique manuscripts and grant proposals during our weekly laboratory meetings.

If you are interested please

  • Read some of my publications (contact me if you do not have access to them) 
  • Contact me at with the following information (be brief at this stage). 
    • Your interests generally and specifically in joining my lab 
    • What experiences have motivated you to pursue, and prepared you for, graduate school 
    • Curriculum Vitae (include GPA, and GRE scores).


2013 Mohammadi., S., K. A. McCoy, D. A. Hutchinson, D. T. Gauthier, ,A. H. Savitzky. 2013. Independently evolved toad-eating snakes exhibit sexually dimorphic enlargement of adrenal glands. Journal of Zoology.

2011 Martin, L. B., A. L. Liebl, J. H. Trotter, C. L. Richards, K. A. McCoy, and M. W. McCoy. Integrators: physiological determinants of individual phenotypic plasticity. Integrative and Comparative Biology 51(4): 514-527.

2011 Hayes, T.B….K. A. McCoy, et al (authors in alphabetical order). Demasculinization and feminization of male gonads by atrazine: consistent effects across vertebrate classes. Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 127(1-2):64-73.

2010 J. R. Rohr and K. A. McCoy. Preserving environmental health and scientific credibility: A practical guide to conflicts of interest. Conservation Letters 3 (3): 143-150 on line.

2010 J. R. Rohr and K. A. McCoy. A Qualitative Meta-Analysis Reveals Consistent Effects of Atrazine on Freshwater Fish and Amphibians. Environmental Health Perspectives 118 (1): 20-32 online

2009 K. A. McCoy and L. J.Guillette Jr. Endocrine Disruptors Chapter 9 in Volume 8 Amphibian Decline: Diseases, Parasites, Maladies, and Pollution. For the series Amphibian Biology. Editor Harold F. Heatwole.

*2008 K. A. McCoy, L. J. Bortnick*, C. M. Campbell*, H. J. Hamlin, L. J. Guillette Jr. and C. M. St. Mary. Agriculture alters gonadal form and function in Bufo marinus. Environmental Health Perspectives

*2008 K.A. McCoy, Kim Hoang*, L. J. Guillette Jr. and C. M. St. Mary. Renal abnormalities in Bufo marinus vary with human land-use. Science of the Total Environment 407 (2008): 348–357 on line

*2007 K. A. McCoy, M. W. McCoy, A. M. Amick*, L. J. Guillette Jr. and C. M. St. Mary. Tradeoffs between somatic and gonadal investments during development in the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis). Journal of Experimental Zoology 307(11): 637-646. on line

2007 M. W. McCoy, K. A. McCoy and D. J. Levey. Teaching biodiversity to students in inner-city and under-resourced schools. American Biology Teacher 69(8): 473-781. on line

*2006 T. Edwards, K. A. McCoy, T. Barbeau, M. W. McCoy, J. M. Thro* and L. J. Guillette Jr. Environmental context determines nitrate toxicity in southern toad tadpoles (Bufo terrestris). Aquatic Toxicology 78: 50-58. on line

Courses Taught:



Laboratory Personnel



Amato Ciro, 
Ph.D. Candidate

download (1)


Bevin Blake, 
MS Student

download (2)


Matthew Edwards, 
MS Student