School of Molecular Biosciences |

Dr. Pat Hunt


Room: BLS 333
Phone: 509-335-4954
Phone: 509-335-4933


Research & Interests

Research in the Hunt laboratory focuses on mammalian germ cells, with a major emphasis on meiosis, the specialized cell division that gives rise to the haploid germ cells. In the human female the incidence of pregnancy loss due to chromosome abnormalities is extraordinarily high. This is a reflection of the fact that the meiotic process is highly error-prone and the incidence of errors in women is strongly influenced by age. Thus, a major research focus is on understanding the control of the normal meiotic process in the mammalian female, the mechanisms(s) by which errors occur, and the way in which age influences female meiosis. In addition, a serendipitous finding that resulted from an accidental exposure in our animal facility, has led to a new avenue of research for the Hunt laboratory. The inadvertent exposure of our mice to the estrogen mimic, bisphenol A (BPA) from damaged caging materials (polycarbonate cages and water bottles) led to the realization that environmentally relevant doses of BPA cause meiotic disruption and aneuploidy in the mouse. Current studies focus on determining the reproductive effects of exposure to chemicals with estrogenic activity during different developmental time points.


  • Skarmoutsos, I. and P. A. Hunt (2010). "Structural and dynamic properties of the new alternative refrigerant 2,3,3,3-tetrafluoro-1-propene (HFO-1234yf) in the liquid state." The journal of physical chemistry. B 114(51): 17120-17127.

  • Hunt, P. and T. Hassold (2010). "Female meiosis: coming unglued with age." Curr Biol 20(17): R699-702.

  • Hassold, T. and P. Hunt (2009). "Maternal age and chromosomally abnormal pregnancies: what we know and what we wish we knew." Curr Opin Pediatr 21(6): 703-708.

  • Hunt, P.A., M. Susiarjo, C. Rubio, and T.J. Hassold, “The Bisphenol A Experience: A Primer for the Analysis of Environmental Effects on Mammalian Reproduction.” Biol Reprod, 2009.

  • Myers, J.P., F.S. vom Saal, B.T. Akingbemi, K. Arizono, S. Belcher, T. Colborn, I. Chahoud, D.A. Crain, F. Farabollini, L.J. Guillette, Jr., T. Hassold, S.M. Ho, P.A. Hunt, T. Iguchi, S. Jobling, J. Kanno, H. Laufer, M. Marcus, J.A. McLachlan, A. Nadal, J. Oehlmann, N. Olea, P. Palanza, S. Parmigiani, B.S. Rubin, G. Schoenfelder, C. Sonnenschein, A.M. Soto, C.E. Talsness, J.A. Taylor, L.N. Vandenberg, J.G. Vandenbergh, S. Vogel, C.S. Watson, W.V. Welshons, and R.T. Zoeller, “Why public health agencies cannot depend on good laboratory practices as a criterion for selecting data: the case of bisphenol A.” Environ Health Perspect, 2009. 117(3): p. 309-15.

  • Muhlhauser, A., M. Susiarjo, C. Rubio, J. Griswold, G. Gorence, T. Hassold, and P.A. Hunt, Bisphenol A effects on the growing mouse oocyte are influenced by diet. Biol Reprod, 2009. 80(5): p. 1066-71.

  • Hassold, T., T. Hansen, P. Hunt, and C. VandeVoort, “Cytological studies of recombination in rhesus males.” Cytogenet Genome Res, 2009. 124(2): p. 132-8.

  • Hunt, P.A. and T.J. Hassold, “Human female meiosis: what makes a good egg go bad?” Trends Genet, 2008. 24(2): p. 86-93.

  • Hunt, P.A., J.M. Jackson, S. Horan, C.A. Lawson, L. Grindell, L.L. Washburn, and E.M. Eicher, “The mouse A/HeJ Y chromosome: another good Y gone bad.” Chromosome Res, 2008. 16(4): p. 623-36.

  • Susiarjo, M. and P. Hunt, “Bisphenol A exposure disrupts egg development in the mouse.” Fertil Steril, 2008. 89(2 Suppl): p. e97.

  • Hassold, T., H. Hall, and P. Hunt, “The origin of human aneuploidy: where we have been, where we are going.” Hum Mol Genet, 2007. 16 Spec No. 2: p. R203-8.

  • Hall, H., P. Hunt, and T. Hassold, “Meiosis and sex chromosome aneuploidy: how meiotic errors cause aneuploidy; how aneuploidy causes meiotic errors.” Curr Opin Genet Dev, 2006. 16(3): p. 323-9.

  • Hunt, P.A., "Meiosis in mammals: recombination, non-disjunction and the environment." Biochem Soc Trans, 2006. 34(Pt 4): p. 574-7.

  • Koehler, K.E., S.E. Schrump, J.P. Cherry, T.J. Hassold, and P.A. Hunt, “Near-human aneuploidy levels in female mice with homeologous chromosomes.” Curr Biol, 2006. 16(15): p. R579-80.

  • Cherry, S.M, Hunt, P.A., Hassold, T.J., “Cisplatin disrupts mammalian spermatogenesis, but does not affect recombination or chromosome segregation.” Mutation Research 564(2):115-128, 2004.

  • Lynn, A., Schrump, St. Cherry, J., Hassold, T, Hunt, P. “Sex, not genotype, determines recombination levels in mice.” American Journal of Human Genetics, 77:670-675, 2005.

  • Hodges, C.A., Revenkova, E., Jessberger, R., Hassold, T.J., Hunt, P.A., “SMC1b-deficient female mice provide evidence that cohesins are a missing link in age-related nondisjunction”, Nature Genetics 37(12):1351-1355, 2005.

Washington State University