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Biology Department

Faculty

 

Ann Antlfingerdna

Ann E. Antlfinger
Professor

Ph.D., Univ. of Georgia, 1979
Office: 514A Allwine Hall, 402.554.2256
aantlfinger@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Organic Evolution, Population Biology, Experimental Design

Research Interests: My research involves both ecological and genetic approaches to plant populations. We are currently studying two rare species: Panax quinquefolius (American Ginseng) and Spiranthes cernua (Nodding ladies' tresses). Both are long-lived, herbaceous plants. American ginseng grows in the deciduous forests in eastern Nebraska while Spiranthes is found in prairies. To examine patterns of genetic variation within and between populations, we have applied nuclear DNA markers and allozymes to both species.

Long-term demographic monitoring allows us to evaluate the present status and model the future of both of these threatened species. Recently, we have investigated the role of light on growth and reproduction in Panax quinquefolius. Transplanted seedlings of Spiranthes cernua have been successfully established at Nine-mile Prairie, providing a test of re-introduction procedures. The importance of mycorrhizae for the growth of terrestrial orchids is also being investigated.

A new area of research is the evaluation of a prairie restoration project at Stolley Prairie in west Omaha.

 

Jill Blankenshipdna

Jill Blankenship
Assistant Professor

Ph.D., Duke University, 2004
Office: Allwine Hall 514E, 402.554.2006
jrblankenship@unomaha.edu

Research Interests: The research in my lab is focused on the pathogenic fungus Candida albicans. C. albicans and related Candida species are the fourth-leading cause of infection in US hospitals. The mortality rate of patients with systemic Candida infections is as high as 40% in certain patient populations, and the susceptible patient population continues to grow. Our work centers on a family of proteins, called septins, which impact both the pathogenesis of the organism as well as its antifungal drug sensitivity. The septins have well-defined roles in cell division, but our work has uncovered novel roles for these proteins in cell wall integrity, a process targeted by the antifungal drug caspofungin. We are utilizing genetic and biochemical approaches to define the role of septins in cell wall integrity as well as their contribution to filamentation, a process required for pathogenesis in this fungus.

 

Tom Braggdna

Thomas B. Bragg
Professor

Ph.D., Kansas State, 1974
Office: Allwine Hall 401A, 402.554.3378
tbragg@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Ecology, Plant Ecology, Fire Ecology, and Communities and Ecosystems

Research Interests: Research in North America focuses on plant community dynamics and diversity of Tallgrass Prairie (native and restored), Loess Hills Prairie, Nebraska Sandhills Prairie, Eastern Deciduous Forests, and Loess Hill Savanna (restoration). The specific focus is on the season and frequency of burning. Research includes assessing historic fire return intervals from fire-scarred trees using dendrochronological techniques. Research projects in Australia focus on fire effects on plant community dynamics of Western Australian desert grasslands as part of a larger study aimed at reintroducing mid-sized mammals to their historic range.

UNO field sites (Allwine, Davis):
http://www.unomaha.edu/prairie/home.php

Prescribed Burn Home Page:
http://www.unomaha.edu/biology/Fire/

 

Bruce Chasedna

Bruce A. Chase
Professor

Ph.D., Yale University, 1986
Office: Allwine Hall 514B, 402.554.2586
bchase@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: General Biology; General and Advanced Genetics; Genetics, Evolution and Development; Bioinformatics; Neuroscience

Research Interests: I am interested in understanding the genetic contributions to neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease and Multiple Sclerosis, developing biomarkers that can aid in early diagnosis and classification of neurodegenerative disorders, and elucidating gene networks involved in neuronal development and maintenance. My research employs genetic analyses in experimental models of disease that include flies and transgenic mice, and, in collaboration with clinical investigators, molecular genetic and bioinformatic analyses of human samples.

 

Christine Cutucachedna

Christine Cutucache
Instructor

Ph.D., UNMC, 2012
Office: Allwine Hall 201B, 402.554.2917
ccutucache@unomaha.edu

 

Research Interests: My research interests stem from my passion for translational research coupled with my enthusiasm for teaching. From the wet-bench side, my interests include the following: i.) Deciphering key components of the immune response that are elevated or depleted following a variety of physiological changes, including: cancer, infection, and pre- and post-transplantation, ii.) Identifying genetic modifiers of disease phenotypes and validating these as potential gene therapy candidates for treatment of genetic disease, and iii.) Developing improved diagnostic methods to use bedside to decrease healthcare costs and expedite diagnosis. Lastly, I am interested in educational scholarship/research and am presently serving on the national Council on Undergraduate Research. Specifically, the goal is to design nascent teaching methods and classroom technology to improve understanding and learning retention.

My Site: http://www.unomaha.edu/biology/cutucache/lab.php

 

Paul Davisdna

Paul H. Davis
Assistant Professor

Ph.D., Washington University School of Medicine, 2006
Office: Allwine Hall 427, 402.554.3379
Lab: Allwine Hall 428,
pdavis@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Molecular & Cellular Biology; Human Infectious Diseases:  Tropical Medicine, Parasitology, and Microbiology

Research Interests: Toxoplasma gondii is a zoonotic human parasite with worldwide distribution.  Approximately 30% of the U.S. population is chronically infected with T. gondii, frequently acquired from infected cats or ingesting undercooked meats. In addition to its classical association with fetal malformation and abortion (a leading cause of congenital neuropathy, affecting >1/1000 live births in the US), toxo­plasmosis also afflicts the growing ranks of immunocompromised individuals (cancer and transplant patients, as well victims of HIV).  Following infection,bradyzoite cysts invade and permanently reside within tissues, and are completely resistant to chemotherapy.  Recently, studies suggest that chronic parasite infection affects human behavior; thus the need to more closely examine this parasite stage is increasing.  Our research involves studying the formation of this intra-tissue bradyzoite cyst using genomic and genetic approaches, both in vitro and in vivo.    Moreover, the causative agent of malaria, P. falciparum, shares a close genetic relationship to T. gondii, the latter of which is a frequently used model for malaria research.  Due to the ease of growth and genetic manipulation, we utilize T. gondii to investigate several recently tested compounds showing anti-parasitic activity in vitro, in an attempt to develop novel anti-malarial treatments.

My Site: http://www.unomaha.edu/toxoplasma


Tim Dicksondna

Timothy L. Dickson
Assistant Professor

Ph.D., University of Kansas, 2006
Office: Allwine Hall 114G, 402.554.2619
tdickson@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Restoration Ecology, Ecology, General Biology

Research Interests: I study the causes and consequences of plant diversity patterns in prairies and grasslands. Much of this research focuses on prairie restoration and the role of seed addition / seed dispersal in controlling plant diversity under different environmental conditions. This research also focuses on ecosystem services that are consequences of plant diversity, such as biomass production (biofuel and forage production), bee diversity (pollination), and soil characteristics (carbon sequestration). The website below provides more information about my research interests and opportunities for becoming involved in this research.

My Site: http://GrasslandEcology.com


 

Robert Egandna

Robert S. Egan
Professor

Ph.D., University of Colorado-Boulder, 1971
Office: Allwine Hall 514F, 402.554.2491
regan@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: General Biology, Lichenology, and Non-vascular Plant Morphology

Research Interests: My research interests include the systematics, ecology and phytogeography of the lichen-forming fungi.  My current research utilizes traditional morphological approaches as well as data from TLC chemical analyses and is centered around floristic and taxonomic studies of the lichens of Wyoming's Snowy Range, the Big Thicket National Preserve in East Texas, and the Lichen family Parmeliaceae in Mexico.  I maintain a lichen herbarium of approximately 17,000 identified specimens, cataloged on computer databases, and have a lichen exchange program. I also maintain computer database files on more than 28,000 lichen literature references published since 1950.

My Site: http://avalon.unomaha.edu/lichens/

 

James Fawcettdna

James D. Fawcett
Associate Professor

Ph.D., University of Colorado, 1975
Office: Allwine Hall 525A, 402.554.2369
Lab: 402.554.2484
jamesfawcett@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields:Herpetology, Vertebrate Embryology, Comparative Anatomy of Vertebrates, Histology, Human Anatomy and Physiology

Research Interests: Anatomy, ecology, behavior, and reproductive biology of amphibians and reptiles; vertebrate histology and embryology. In particular, I am interested in the structure-function and hormonal control of the lepidosaurian oviduct and uterus, and the ecology and conservation of the amphibians and reptiles of Nebraska. I also maintain a bibliographic database on tuatara, lizards and leiopelmatid frogs of New Zealand. Current graduate student studies include 1)Population dynamics of two sympatric softshell turtles and implications for river flow regulation, 2) Spatial ecology and natural history of the western massasauga rattlesnake in Nebraska, 3) Histology and histochemistry of the stomach and intestine of an anoline lizard, and 4) Population dynamics, demographics and conservation of the Osage copperhead in Nebraska.

 

robert Garrisondna

Robert Garrison
Instructor

DVM, Iowa State, 1987
MS, Purdue, 1996
Office: Allwine Hall 523, 402.554.3141
rgarrison@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields:Writing in Biology, Immunology, Animal Physiology, Parasitology, Entomology

Research Interests: Medical entomology/acarology, parasitic zoonoses (animal parasite infections transmissible to people), wildlife parasitology, infectious disease aspects of public health


Alan Kolokdna

Alan S. Kolok
Professor

Ph.D., University of Colorado, 1991
Office: Allwine Hall 422C, 402.554.3545
akolok@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Animal Physiology, Toxicology

Research Interests: - Land use and its impact on water quality and environmental health. - Fish as environmental, sentinel organisms. - Gene expression in fishes exposed to chemical stressors.

My Site: www.unomaha.edu/envirotox   My joint appointment: www.unmc.edu/publichealth/environmental/

 

Guoqing Luedna

Guoqing Lu
Associate Professor

Ph.D., University Laval, Canada, 2000
Office: Allwine Hall 514D, 402.554.3195
Lab: Allwine Hall 531
glu3@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields:all about bioinformatics, including Intro to Bioinformatics, Applied Bioinformatics,Bioinformatics Algorithms, and Seminar in Bioinformatics.

Research Interests: I am interested in bioinformatics. My lab has been developing biological databases and new algorithms for understanding better how genes or non-coding regions give each organism unique characteristics. Currently we have several ongoing research projects that cover different aspects in evolutionary bioinformatics as below:

Phylomarker - an in silico data mining tool for predicting gene regions that are likely to reflect the true evolutionary history and thus can be used as genetic markers for constructing species phylogeny. In collaboration with Dr C. Li at UNL. Website: http://bioinfo-srv1.awh.unomaha.edu/phylomarker/index.php.

GenomeBLAST - a Web tool for comparative genomics analysis. This tool is particularly useful for organisms with small genome size, e.g., viruses. GenomeBlast uses a novel parameter, namely coverage, for homologous gene prediction. Website: http://www.flugenome.org/

FluGenome - a Web server for genotyping influenza A virus using genome sequences. In collaboration with Dr. Ruben Donis at CDC (http://www.cdc.gov/), we are developing an application for genotyping Avian flu viruses. FluGenome provides functions for the user to interrogate the database in different modalities and get detailed reports on lineages and genotypes.

My Site: http://bioinfo-srv1.awh.unomaha.edu/

 

John McCartydna

John P. McCarty
Professor

Ph.D., Cornell University, 1995
Office: Allwine Hall 422G, 402.554.2849
Lab: Allwine Hall 103
jmccarty@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Ornithology, Environmental Biology, Environmental Field Methods

Research Interests: My research focuses on the ecology and conservation of birds.  I am especially interested in designing research that meets the needs of policy-makers and resource managers, while also addressing basic questions in ecology. The current focus of my lab is on the ecology of birds in ecosystems heavily modified by agriculture. This research includes work on grassland birds that combines population-level studies of Dickcissels (Spiza americana) with community-level work looking at the grassland bird community in relation to vegetation and food supply. My lab is also actively working on the ecology of shorebirds that migrate through the agro-ecosystem of Nebraska's Rainwater Basin region.

 My Site: http://www.unomaha.edu/environmental_studies/JPM_Home.html

 

Karen Murch-Shaferdna

Karen Murch-Shafer
Assistant Professor

Ph.D., University of Wyoming, 1999
Office: Allwine Hall 422B, 402.554.3560
kmurchshafer@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Human Anatomy & Physiology, Genetics, Biology I

Research Interests: My research interests primarily center on the study of Apis mellifera (the European honeybee) and native bees.  Current projects investigate identifying genetic honeybee strains that are best able to fight off ecological threats, such as infestations of the Varroa destructor mite and wax moths.  I’m also interested in providing undergraduate students with small research projects that get them excited about asking scientific questions, and designing and executing approaches to answer those questions.  Recent projects include identifying methods for small scale fungal propagation, and the development of new techniques to investigate tooth decay.  Best pedagogical practices for teaching science are also an interest. 
Manager of the UNO Apiary & Advisor for the Pre-Physical Therapy Club

 

Claudia Rauterdna

Claudia Rauter
Assistant Professor

Ph.D., University of Zurich, 1996
Office: Allwine Hall 114, 402.554.3116
crauter@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Ecology, Behavioral Ecology, Environmental Biology

Research Interests: My research focuses on the ecology and evolution of social behavior and life histories. The subsocial burying beetles (Nicrophorus spp.) are an ideal system to study social behavior and life histories from the perspective of behavioral ecology, quantitative genetics, and evolutionary biology. My current research projects focus on indirect genetic effects of parental care and brood size as well as on the environmental and genetic factors causing variation in parental care and brood size.

 

Donald Rowendna

Donald Rowen
Associate Professor

Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 1992
Office: Allwine Hall 114J, 402.554.2143
Lab: Allwine Hall 133, 402.554.3996
drowen@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: microbiology, molecular biology, biochemistry and principles of biology

Research Interests: My research focuses on microbial pathogenesis or how microbes cause disease.  I have conducted studies of several different aspects on pathogenesis by bacteria.  Currently the main focus of my lab is investigating how the bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa is able to secrete toxins via a Type III secretion system directly into cells of the host it is infecting.  A Type III secretion system is used by many bacterial pathogens such as Salmonella to secrete toxins into cells of the host they are infecting.  We are investigating why some toxins require an accessory protein called a chaperone for secretion to occur.  My lab is also studying the regulation of the production of the exopolysaccharide alginate by P. aeruginosa.  Production of alginate contributes to the ability of Pseudomonas to cause chronic lung infections in cystic fibrosis patients.  We have been working to identify the factors that regulate alginate production and to characterize their role.  I am also interested in developing new ways to treat infections and in testing the effectiveness of new antimicrobial drugs or chemicals.

 

Mark Schoenbeckdna

Mark Schoenbeck
Associate Professor

Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 1997
Office: Allwine Hall 109B, 402.554.2390
Lab: 402.554.2172
mschoenbeck@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: plant physiology, molecular, and cellular biology, molecular plant-microbe interactions and plant stress physiology, molecular methods and research strategies, plant biology and the history of agriculture, undergraduate research experience, writing in biology, general biology

Research Interests: Physiology and metabolism of parasitic and carnivorous plants, especially Cuscuta pentagona (dodder) and Dionaea muscipula (Venus flytrap); carbon and nitrogen metabolism, RNA metabolism, and plant growth and development.

 

Scott Snyderdna

Scott D. Snyder
Professor

Ph.D., University of Nebraska Lincoln, 1996
Office: Allwine Hall 211C, 402.554.2469
Lab: 402.554.2059
ssnyder@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Biology II, parasitology

Research Interests: My research interests are broad and encompass parasite biodiversity, parasite biogeography and host-parasite coevolution. I examine these aspects of biology by focusing on the parasites of turtles, specifically Australian turtles. Dr. Vasyl Tkach and I have been funded by the National Science Foundation to examine parasite biodiversity in Australian turtles. We are currently collecting parasites, identifying the few that are known, and describing the species that are new to science. As our biodiversity research proceeds we conduct evolutionary examinations of Australian turtle parasites and other turtle worms from around the world. These evolutionary examinations use morphological, molecular and life history information and I am keenly interested in the role of hosts in driving parasite cladogenesis. My approach combines field work, microscopy, experimental biology and molecular techniques and is very amenable to student participation. 

My Site:http://avalon.unomaha.edu/parasite/

 

Richard Stasiakdna

Richard H. Stasiak
Professor

Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 1972
Office: Allwine Hall 211B, 402.554.2295
rstasiak@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Ichthyology, limnology, stream ecology, fauna of the great plains, parasitology, biosystematics, biogeography

Research Interests: Ichthyology/aquatic ecology: life history, ecology and systematics of North American fishes. Studies of reproduction in the minnow genus Phoxinus have demonstrated a parthenogenetic polyploid/mosaic complex in the Nebraska Sandhills. Ecological studies have been made on many Nebraskan fishes including pearl and blacknose dace, sicklefin and sturgeon chub, plains topminnow, tadpole madtom, orangethroat and Iowa darters. Field records from the past 25 years document the distribution of the state's fishes; data on population levels allows the compilation of a threatened/endangered species list. Morphological, electrophoretic, and DNA techniques have been used to investigate systematic relationships in several groups of midwestern fishes. Studies of predator/prey relationships revealed changes in behavior and physiology in Daphnia and relative spine length in sticklebacks in bodies of water without fishes.

 

Roxanne Steeledna

P. Roxanne (Steele) Kellar
Assistant Professor

Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin, 2009
Office: Allwine Hall 211A, 402.554.2840
Lab: Allwine Hall 288
rkellar@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Plant Systematics, Flora of the Great Plains, General Biology

Research Interests:  My research focuses on discovering genetic and morphological variation in disparate groups of plants, utilizing the newest technologies, to address questions in plant systematics, species identification, and biodiversity investigations. Specifically, I am using massively parallel (next-generation) sequencing technologies on the Illumina platform to obtain DNA sequences from multiple genomes to investigate evolutionary history and biodiversity and to test species identification questions in an endangered tallgrass prairie ecosystem - the Nature Conservancy's Niobrara Valley Preserve in north-central Nebraska. The preserve, at nearly 60,000 acres, is one of the largest Conservancy preserves in the U.S. It is a unique region of mixed-grass, tall-grass, and sandhills prairie where six major ecosystems converge due to unique geology and geography, giving the region the name “biological crossroads”. My future research goals include investigating the genetic basis of biodiversity in plants from various habitats, and making comparisons between geographic locations, in order to gain knowledge for future studies and for conservation.

My Site: http://www.unomaha.edu/biodiversity/

 

William Tapprichdna

William Tapprich
Professor and Chair

Ph.D., University of Montana, 1986
Office: Allwine Hall 211F, 402.554.3380
Lab: Allwine Hall 232, 402.554.2948
wtapprich@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Molecular Biology, Virology, Nucleic Acids Biochemistry, Protein Structure

Research Interests:   The overall goal of our research is to understand the structure and function of RNA molecules. Most of our early work focused on ribosomal RNA (rRNA), characterizing the role of the RNA in protein synthesis (Vila et al 1994, Thompson et al 2001). We have recently embarked on a new area of investigation studying the structure and function of viral RNA molecules, particularly enteroviral genomic RNA. Many of the approaches that we used for determining the structure of rRNA are also applicable to viral RNA. We have initiated studies to learn the structure of the internal ribosome entry site (IRES) RNA found in picornaviruses (Kim et al., 2005, Bailey and Tapprich 2007). This work is significant because virulence is determined by IRES structure. In our initial studies we have used chemical modification and primer extension to deduce the secondary structure of the IRES elements in coxsackievirus B3. This analysis has been completed for virulent wild type viruses and for attenuated mutant viruses. We have shown localized structural changes in the IRES RNA that correlate with virulence. Theses shifts in structure occur in regions of the IRES known to be important for the binding of key cellular proteins. The results show that viral replication and viral virulence is critically dependent on discrete structures in the RNA. Further characterization of these structures will lead to strategies to develop antiviral compounds and vaccines.

My Site: http://www.unomaha.edu/biology/tapprich.php

 

Jeremy Whitedna

Jeremy White
Instructor

Ph.D., Auburn University, 2008
Office: Allwine Hall 211D, 402.554.3294
jeremywhite@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Environmental Biology and General Biology

Research Interests: I am interested in ecology and conservation, and my research focuses on the behavior, ecology, and natural history of mammals. Current research includes studies on the behavior of seed-storing rodents and their role in plant dispersal in the Great Plains and on the distribution and natural history of bats in the central United States.  

 

James Wilsondna

James A. Wilson
Assistant Professor

Ph.D., Oklahoma State University, 2002
Office: Allwine Hall 109C, 402.554.2585
jameswilson@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Zoology, Mammalogy, Physiological Ecology

Research Interests:  Physiological ecology is a new discipline that provides a unique method for investigating processes at the individual level that are responsible for regulating populations.  This interface represents a new direction in biology where we can begin to link specific cellular processes into a generalized ecological theoretical framework.  My research interests are centered on understanding the link between physiology and population/behavioral ecology.  Several broad questions represent my interests and illustrate the focus of my research program.  How does maternal body condition influence offspring survival, fitness, and dispersal ability?  What is the link between habitat quality, nutrition, and immune function and how does this affect survival, reproduction, and dispersal.  Finally, what roles do energetics and thermoregulation play in species susceptible to global warming (e.g., alpine/arctic species).  Model species that I use are focused on mammals, but also include reptiles and amphibians as ectothermic model species.  For a complete list of current and past projects and publications visit my homepage, listed below.

The Wilson Lab - Adventurers Welcome

 

Lareesa Wolfenbargerdna

L. Lareesa Wolfenbarger
Associate Professor

Ph.D., Cornell University, 1996
Office: Allwine Hall 514C, 402.554.2405
lwolfenbarger@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Conservation Biology, Fauna of the Great Plains

Research Interests:  Dr. Wolfenbarger conducts research on the ecology and conservation of grassland species and communities in the agricultural landscape of the Great Plains. She also devotes research time to synthesizing information for policymakers and resource managers so that scientific results are readily available for decision makers.

My Site: http://www.unomaha.edu/environmental_studies/LLWolfenbarger.html

 

 

Postdoctoral Research

 

Andrew Coxdna

Andrew Cox
Postdoctoral Research Associate

PhD, University of Missouri, 2011
Office: Allwine Hall 103, 402.554.3985
Email: wcox@unomaha.edu

Research interests: I am interested in how land use, climate change, and management decisions influence the abundance and demography of birds.  My past work includes investigating the effects of temperature on songbird productivity, the effects of land cover on predator-specific rates of nest predation, and how long-term declines in the abundance of a common brood parasite (Brown-headed Cowbird) have influenced songbird productivity.  My research here is focused on evaluating the relative abundance and productivity of songbirds in landscapes dominated by row-crop agriculture.  We are also modeling how recent changes in land-use are influencing the abundance of grassland birds at regional and national scales.

 

Lakshmi Prasad Potluridna

Lakshmi Prasad Potluri
Postdoctoral Research Associate

Ph.D.,University of Arkansas for MedicalSciences, 2011
Office: Allwine Hall 413, 402.554.2641
lpotluri@unomaha.edu

Research Interests: I work under the supervision of Dr. Paul Davis. Our lab is interested in studying the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which causes cerebral encephalitis in immuno-compromised individuals (AIDS patients and cancer/organ transplant patients undergoing chemotherapy). The focus of my research is to understand the formation of the bradyzoite stage of Toxoplasma, which is responsible for the formation of tissue cysts in the brain and muscular tissue. Reactivation of these bradyzoite cysts in immuno-compromised individuals causes Toxoplasmic encephalitis, which can be deadly if untreated. Currently there is no vaccine or treatment to prevent or clear the tissue cysts. Therefore, understanding how the bradyzoite stage is formed is essential for the development of new therapeutics. We are planning to use a combination of functional genomics and molecular biology tools to identify the genes that prevent bradyzoite cyst formation. We are also interested in developing cell-based screens to identify new small molecules that prevent the bradyzoite cyst formation and to identify the mechanism of action of recently published anti-parasitic compounds.

 

dna

Dongren Ren
Postdoctoral Research Associate

Ph.D., Jiangxi Agricultural University of China, 2008
Office: Allwine Hall 524, 402.554.2641
dren@unomaha.edu

Research Interests: My research interests include molecular mechanisms of human diseases and animal models of human diseases. My earlier work included identifying the causative mutation contributing to economically important traits in farm animals by classical genetic approaches, production of transgenic pigs by somatic cell nuclear transfer, identifying the molecular mechanisms underlying human diseases such as gastroesophageal reflux disease and Barett's esophagus, and study of behavioral genetics in domestic animals.

 

Sarah Skolnessdna

Sarah Skolness
Research Assistant

Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 2012
Office: Allwine Hall 114, 402.554.2641
sskolness@unomaha.edu

Research Interests: Toxicology

 

 

 

Emeritus Faculty

 

Bill deGrawdna

William A. deGraw
Professor
Emeritus
Ph.D., Washington State, 1972
Office: Allwine Hall 212, 402.554.2641
wdegraw@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Principles of Biology, Endocrinology, Writing in Biology, Human Physiology

Research Interests: Avian physiology and endocrinology
Studies tracking seasonal changes in blood lipids in free-living and captive populations of White-crowned Sparrows documented dramatic metabolic adaptations attending preparations for migration. Work with Harris' Sparrows, a migratory visitor to eastern Nebraska, dealt with the control of lipid mobilization, particularly the role of the pancreatic hormone glucagon. Additional studies in this species focused on metabolic adaptations during fasting under winter conditions, the importance of lipid reserves, and the role of glucocorticoid hormones. More recent work described dramatic plasma volume expansion associated with postnuptial molting in Harris' Sparrows. Collaborative work with J. French and S. Hendricks (Psychology, UNO) included radioimmunoassay of LH in golden lion tamarins and studies of feedback control of its release.

 

Ken Gelusodna

Kenneth N. Geluso
Professor Emeritus

Ph.D., University of New Mexico, 1972
Office: Allwine Hall 211A, 402.554.2840
kgeluso@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Introductory Biology, Environmental Science, Mammalogy, Natural History of the Vertebrates

Research Interests: All aspects of mammalian biology with an emphasis on ecology and ecophysiology. My current projects involve studying renal form and function in shrews and moles, effects of pesticides on bats, effects of prairie fires on small mammals, and the natural history of Nebraskan and New Mexican mammals.

 

Suznne Moshierdna

Suzanne E. Moshier
Professor Emeritus

Ph.D., University of Chicago, 1972
Office: Allwine Hall 114, 402.554.3397
smoshier@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Developmental Biology, Intro to Immunology

Research Interests: With Raychel A. Watkins and Aelita J. Pinter, conducted a search for an invertebrate host for Hepatozoon sp. infecting the montane vole (Microtus montanus), we collected fleas, ticks, and mites from live-trapped voles and searched squash preparations for Hepatozoon oocysts. From 1989 through 1996, we identified six species of fleas in Grand Teton National Park: Megabothris abantis, Megabothris asio megacolpus, Aetheca wagneri, Peromyscopsylla selenis, Peromyscopsylla. hesperomys, and Hystrichopsylla dippiei dippiei. We found Hepatozoon oocysts only in M. abantis; we found no oocysts in mites or ticks. We conclude that M. abantis is an invertebrate host of Hepatozoon sp. and is likely to be the definitive host for theHepatozoon spp. of M. montanus.

 

Carl Nordahldna

Carl E. Nordahl
Assistant Professor Emeritus

Retired May 2005
Ph.D., University of Iowa, 1969
cnordahl@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: plant physiology, cellular biology, botany, plant anatomy, microtechnique

Research Interests: Plant growth hormones and/or regulators; the use of plant tissue culture to study various hormonal effects; the use of light and electron microscopy to study regulator effects at the cellular and tissue levels; studies dealing with chloroplast development and function in gibberellin treated tissues.

 

Bill O'Delldna

William D. O'Dell
Professor Emeritus

Retired May 1998
Ph.D., Bowling Green State University, 1971
Office: Allwine Hall 521B, 402.554.2540

dejour@roadrunner.com

Teaching Fields: microbiology, pathogenic microbiology, parasitology

Research Interests: parasitic protists

 

Dave Sutherlanddna

David M. Sutherland
Professor Emeritus

Retired May 2004
Ph.D., University of Washington, 1967
Office: Allwine Hall 521B, 402.554.2540

dsutherland@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: plant systematics, general biology, plant morphology, writing and communicating in biology

Research Interests: Floristics, taxonomic treatments of genera, vegetative characteristics of grasses. Wrote treatments of 75 genera of Poaceae and 11 genera of Ranunculaceae for Great Plains Flora. Wrote several legume genera, Dalea, Errazurizia, Psorothamnus, and Marina, for Flora of North America. Wrote and edited many parts of Flora of Nebraska (with Robert Kaul and Steven Rolfsmeier).

 

Tom Weberdna

A. Thomas Weber
Professor Emeritus

Retired May 2004
Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, 1970
Office: Allwine Hall 114C, 402.554.2619

tweber@unomaha.edu

Teaching Fields: Microbial Physiology, Fungi, Microbiology, Genetics

Research Interests: My research interests are in understanding the regulation of development in microorganisms. We are concentrating our research efforts on Dictyostelium as the model organism for these investigations. In Dictyostelium, independently growing cells, upon receiving the appropriate signal, cooperate to produce one of two multicellular structures: spore-bearing sorocarps or macrocysts.  We are investigating the processes that control the choice between sorocarp and macrocyst development. Monoclonal antibodies are used to follow temporal, spatial and quantitative aspects of stage-specific proteins. cDNA libraries provide the starting point for identifying genes expressed at the earliest stages of multicellular development.  The indentity of these genes and their requirement for normal development are being studied.

 

 

Other Faculty Appointments

 

Nancy Andrews, Ph.D., [Corps of Engineers]
Adjunct Assistant Professor

Jeffrey A. French, Ph.D.,[Psychology]
Courtesy Professor
Allwine Hall 418
(402) 554-2558
jfrench@unomaha.edu

Paul S. Ing, Ph.D., [Boys Town]
Adjunct Assistant Professor

William Kimberling, Ph.D.,[Boys Town]
Adjunct Associate Professor

Naida M. Loskutoff, Ph.D., [Henry Doorly Zoo]
Adjunct Assistant Professor

Katerina Markopoulou, M.D., Ph.D.
Adjunct Assistant Professor

Steven N. Rodie, M.L.A., [UNL]
Courtesy Assistant Professor
Office: Allwine Hall 211E, 402.554.3752
srodie@unomaha.edu

Jimmy A. Rogers, Ph.D.[Mathematics]
Courtesy Associate Professor
Durham Science Center 250, 402.554.3110
jimmyrogers@unomaha.edu

Steven M. Tracy, Ph.D.,[UNMC]
Courtesy Associate Professor
402.559.7477
stracy@mail.unmc.edu

Nancy Wilson, M.D.
Adjunct Assistant Professor