Biology Announcements

The following is a list of the latest news from the Department of Biological Sciences. For more general stories or announcements, please visit the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science homepage, the Jupiter Life Science Initiative webpage, and the Owl Research & Innovation Magazine.


August 15, 2019

2019 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) Retreat. The FAU Undergraduate Research and Inquiry (OURI) office held their 7th Annual Summer Retreat. SURF projects are ten-week, intensive summer immersion research experiences for FAU undergraduate students. This year students in the labs of Drs. Rindy Anderson, Evelyn Frazier, Diane Baronas-Lowell, James Hartmann, and Marianne Porter participated in the SURF program.


August 9, 2019

What Can a Blind Fish Teach Us About Sleep? Frontiers for Young Minds recently published an article written by Alexandra Paz, a second-year Integrative Biology-Neuroscience student who works for Dr. Alex Keene, that explores the various experiments that can be conducted using cavefish and why these experiments might be useful for humans.


August 5, 2019

IB PhD Alums Publish Paper. Drs. Olena Mahneva and Stacee Caplan, both who were co-advised by Dr. Sarah Milton and Dr. Ken Dawson-Scully, recently published a paper in Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part C: Toxicology & Pharmacology.


August 2, 2019

Shark Researchers Featured on National Geographic. Drs. Steve Kajiura and Matt Ajemian were recently featured  on the National Geographic television show "When Sharks Attack" in an episode titled, The Shark Bite State. 


July 29, 2019

IB PhD Student Research Featured in Online News Platform. Daniel Alempijevic, IB PhD student who works in the laboratory of Dr. Kate Detwiler, had his research featured in Mongabay, a nonprofit environmental science and conservation news platform.


July 26, 2019

Nambu REU Student Presentations. The John Nambu Memorial Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program showcased this year's scholarship recipients at the annual Nambu REU Research Day. Congratulations to this year's recipients!


July 22, 2019

Growing Up Scientist. Jane Goodall, Ph.D., and FAU’s Kate Detwiler, Ph.D., credit similar childhoods, filled with investigating the natural world and encouragement from supportive parents, that lead to their successful careers as scientists.


July 19, 2019

FAU Social Video: Under the Sea Discoveries. FAU Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute researcher and Biology graduate programs faculty member Dr. Shirley Pomponi has made some interesting discoveries exploring our oceans.


July 17, 2019

New Associate Director of the IB PhD Program. Dr. Xing-Hai Zhang has agreed to serve as the Associate Director of the Integrative Biology PhD Program.


July 15, 2019

IB PhD Student & Alum Publish Paper. Tyrone Penserga, IB PhD candidate who works in the laboratory of Dr. Tanja Godenschwege, recently published a paper with former lab mate Dr. Sirisha Kudumala in Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience entitled "A Role for Drosophila Amyloid Precursor Protein in Retrograde Trafficking of L1-Type Cell Adhesion Molecule Neuroglian."


July 12, 2019

Ask A Scientist Features Behavioral Ecologist. Dr. Rindy Anderson was featured in the eighth episode of the podcast series. Anderson studies the social behavior of songbirds, in particular the vocal signals of Bachman's sparrows.


July 8, 2019

Biology Students Win Competitive Research Awards. Two students that work in Rindy Anderson's laboratory, Morgan Slevin, a PhD student, and Gillian Cannataro, an undergraduate researcher, both won competitive Sigma Xi Grants in Aid of Research awards from the American Ornithological Society. Slevin was also awarded a prestigious and competitive Hesse Award for Graduate Research.


July 5, 2019

New Interim Chair of Biology Department. We are pleased to announce that Dr. Sarah Milton will be appointed as the Interim Chair of the Department of Biological Sciences beginning July 13th.


July 1, 2019

FAU Student Spotlight on Podcast. Boris Tezak, a PhD candidate who works in the laboratory of Dr. Jeanette Wyneken, was recently interviewed in the So You Want to Be a Marine Biologist podcast. Tezak studies temperature sex determination in sea turtles and has discovered a new way to identify the sex of young sea turtles without the need for invasive surgery. He discusses his research in the podcast "Hot Chicks and Cool Dude Sea Turtles" with host and FAU alumni Kara Muzia.


June 28, 2019

Biology Faculty Gives Talk in Israel. Dr. Ken Dawson-Scully, Associate VP for Strategic Initiatives and Associate Professor of Biology, was recently invited to give a talk at Ariel University located on the West Bank. Dawson-Scully discussed his current research in a talk entitled "Protein Kinase G modulates seizure duration in C. elegans  using a novel electroconvulsion assay.”


June 24, 2019

FAU Receives NIH Grant to Develop Rapid, Reliable, Low-cost HIV Test. Drs. Waseem Asghar and Massimo Caputi, members of the IB PhD program faculty, have received a $377,971 grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop a disposable HIV-1 viral load microchip that can selectively capture HIV from whole blood/plasma.


June 21, 2019

Help Support Coral Reef Research Conservation. Drs. Chelsea Bennice and Randy Brooks are asking for donations to help survey octopuses near the Blue Heron Bridge, Phil Foster Park and Lake Worth Lagoon. Coral reefs are at risk due to the populations of many reef animals quickly declining and the microbiome of local octopus species may be the key to conserving our reefs.


June 17, 2019

Ask A Scientist Features Shark Migration Expert. Dr. Stephen Kajiura was featured in the sixth episode of the podcast series. Kajiura researches the seasonal aggregations of black tip sharks that visit south Florida during the winter months.


June 14, 2019

New Lionfish Exhibit at Gumbo Limbo Features IB PhD Candidate. Kate Galloway, who works in the laboratory of Dr. Marianne Porter, is featured in the new lionfish wall exhibit at Gumbo Limbo Nature Center! She was also recently featured on the College of Science Facebook page! 


June 12, 2019

Cavefish Tri-Lab Publishes Visual Guides in JoVE. Drs. Alex Keene, Erik  Duboué, and Johanna Kowalko have recently published a number of visual guides to study cavefish and zebrafish function and behavior in the Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE).


June 10, 2019

New FAU Research Hub App. Connect, collaborate and fine research funding by joining the hundreds of faculty and students who have signed up for the FAU Research Hub. The hub is a new web and mobile platform that connects researchers with students, collaborators and funding opportunities. Investigators are encouraged to post projects in just minutes.


June 6, 2019

Tolerance to Stress is a ‘Trade-off’ as Fruit Flies Age. Dr. Ken Dawson-Scully was recently featured in the FAU Newsdesk for his research using the common fruit fly to find biomarkers of aging and identify therapeutic interventions to counteract the deleterious effects of aging.


June 3, 2019

Dual-Enrolled Student Wins at International Science Fair. Hannah Herbst, who works in the laboratory of Dr. Marianne Porter, recently won $5,000 for first place in the translational medical science category at the 2019 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.


May 31, 2019

Ask A Scientist Features Primatologist. Dr. Kate Detwiler was featured in the fifth episode of the podcast series. Detwiler studies monkeys in their natural habitat, specifically hybridization between different species of monkeys. She performs research in Gombe Nartional Park in western Tanzania, Africa and other sites in the Congo Basin.


May 29, 2019

FAU HBOI Marine Biologist Selected For NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operation (NEEMO) 23. Dr. Shirley Pomponi, marine biologist at FAU Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute was selected to join NASA’s next underwater mission to study what happens when one lives underwater for an extended period of time.


May 23, 2019

Biology Graduate Student Featured in Graduate College Newsletter. Katherine Galloway, IB PhD candidate who works in the laboratory of Dr. Marianne Porter, was featured in the Graduate Research Spotlight of the May 2019 newsletter!


May 15, 2019

Biology Graduate Students Sweep 10th Annual GPSA Research Day. Congratulations to all the biology graduate students that received awards during the annual GPSA Graduate Research Day.


May 13, 2019

New Associate VP of Academic Affairs for FAU Jupiter Campus. Dr. Rod Murphey, Professor and Chairman of the Biological Sciences Department, has been newly appointed as the Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs for the FAU Jupiter campus.


May 10, 2019

FAU Grad is a Real Life "Science Mermaid". Chelsea Bennice, recent graduate of the IB PhD program who worked in the laboratory of Dr. Randy Brooks, recently accepted a position at FAU Brain Institute’s ASCEND program, an innovative program used to address the national shortage in STEM career-oriented students.


May 6, 2019

FAU scientist studying effects of oil spills on stingrays. Dr. Stephen Kajiura, Professor of Biology, was featured on a FAU social media video about his research investigating the effects of oil spills on stingrays.


May 1, 2019

Marine Science Masters Student Featured in Science Connect. Catherine Lo is the first student at FAU to receive a Master of Science in Marine Science and Oceanography in this newly established degree program.


Updated Monday, July 15, 2019