Biology Faculty2017-12-04T21:25:22+00:00

BIOLOGY

Academic Program at Centre College

PROGRAM FACULTY

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Stephen E. Asmus

Photo of Stephen E. Asmus
H.W. Stodghill, Jr. and Adele H. Stodghill Professor of Biology and Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Work Young Hall—123 Work Phone: 859.238.5318 Website: Personal Webpage
Biography

Steve Asmus is H.W. Stodghill, Jr. and Adele H. Stodghill Professor of Biology and Biochemistry & Molecular Biology. He has taught in the biology and biochemistry/molecular biology programs since 1996. He received the Kirk Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2001 and again in 2016, and was named a Centre Scholar in 2011. Prior to joining the college, he held a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Neurosciences at Case Western Reserve University.

Asmus has special expertise in the field of developmental neurobiology, which focuses on how the brain develops. He describes his research as a study of the development of neurons, which are specialized types of cells found in the nervous system. The neurons produce chemicals known as neurotransmitters that make it possible for the neurons to communicate with each other.

Asmus is interested in how neurons produce the correct neurotransmitter during development. He has analyzed the neurotransmitters produced in developing sympathetic neurons, addressing the question of whether different target tissues influence this “decision” process during development.

Currently, Asmus is studying the neurotransmitters that are produced in the cerebral cortex of the developing and adult brain to examine whether some cortical neurons may change the neurotransmitter that they produce as they mature. Asmus uses a variety of cell staining and microscopy techniques in his laboratory research.

Asmus encourages Centre students to collaborate with him on research. His recent collaborators, all biochemistry and molecular biology majors, include Kaylind Batey ’17, Serena Gale-Butto ’17, Shannon Murray ’17, and Lexie Szalanczy ’18.

Asmus has published his research in journals including the Journal of Chemical Neuroanatomy (2016), Brain Research (2008 and 2011), and the Journal of Neuroscience (2000). Asmus co-authored these research articles with numerous student collaborators.

Asmus earned a B.S. degree from Cleveland State University and a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, and conducted a postdoctoral fellowship in neuroscience at Case Western Reserve University before coming to Centre.

Email: steve.asmus@centre.edu

File last updated: 10/23/14

Notes

EXPERT: Cloning — Stem cells — Developmental neurobiology — Research on the development of neurons and neurotransmitters — Analysis of neurotransmitters, sympathetic neurons, and target tissues

Special expertise in the field of developmental neurobiology. Research on the neurotransmitters produced in interneurons of the cerebral cortex during development. Asmus frequently collaborates with students on his research. He has authored professional papers for journals including Brain Research and Developmental Biology.

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Stephanie Dew

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Professor of Biology and Biochemistry & Molecular Biology • Chair of Biology Program Biology, Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Work Young Hall—120 Work Phone: 859.238.5316 Website: Personal website:
Biography

Stephanie Dew is a professor of biology at Centre College, where she has taught since 1994. Dew was named a Centre Scholar in 2009, and has served as chair of the biochemistry & molecular biology program. Her teaching assignments are concentrated in biochemistry and molecular biology, including courses in biomolecular architecture and biochemical pathways.

Dew has pursued research since her own undergraduate days at Centre, focusing on the proteins and enzymes required for the transport and metabolism of vitamin A, especially in freshwater fish. In 1997, she received a grant from the Teagle Foundation for research at King’s College of the University of London. Dew worked with a team investigating the role of vitamin A in development.

At Centre, Dew seeks to involve her students in research. In her first four years at the college, she has directed seven independent study-research projects, including two students chosen for Centre’s prestigious John C. Young Scholars program. Brad Eilerman, a Centre student who collaborated with Dew on a summer research, won first place in the undergraduate division of the Kentucky Academic of Science for his presentation of the research.

An innovative teacher, Dew has been at the forefront of efforts to obtain and appropriately use technology in Centre’s science classes.

She earned a B.A. at Centre, graduating Phi Beta Kappa, and completed a Ph.D. at Vanderbilt University, where she was a University Graduate Fellow.

Email: stephanie.dew@centre.edu

File last updated: 5/2/13

Notes

EXPERT: Undergraduate instruction in biochemistry and biomolecular biology — Web as a tool in undergraduate science — Research on vitamin A metabolism

Long-term research on the proteins and enzymes required for the transport and metabolism of vitamin A, especially in freshwater fish. Role of vitamin A in development. Collaborative research with students — two John C. Young Scholars in four years.

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Stephanie Fabritius

Photo of Stephanie Fabritius
Professor of Biology Biology Work Crounse Hall 431 Work Phone: 859.238.5461
Biography

Stephanie Fabritius is a professor of biology. She served as vice president for academic affairs and dean of the College from 2006 to 2018. Prior to joining Centre, she was a professor, associate provost, and director of the Paideia Program at Southwestern University, where she worked for more than 17 years.

While at Southwestern University, she held the Lillian Nelson Pratt Chair in the Sciences from 2000 to 2004, and in 1997 received the Exemplary Teaching Award from the Board of Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church. In 2002-2003, she was one of 35 professors and academic administrators from across the country selected for an American Council on Education Fellowship. She spent her fellowship year at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. Dean Fabritius currently serves on the board of the American Council of Academic Deans.

Fabritius’ signature courses have included introductory biology, biological diversity and interactions, ecology, animal behavior, evolution, natural history of the vertebrates, animal behavior seminar, and introduction to research.

She holds a B.S. in biology from Pepperdine University and a Ph.D. from Purdue University.

Email: stephanie.fabritius@centre.edu

File last updated: 1/13/15

Amanda Falk

Photo of Amanda Falk
Assistant Professor of Biology • Pre-Veterinary Advisor Biology Work Office: Young Hall – 122 Work Phone: 859.238.5304
Biography

Amanda Falk graduated with a B. S. (Honors) in Biology from Lake Superior State University, performing a senior thesis on molecular and morphometric sexing of bald eagles and related species. She received her M.S. and Ph.D. in Geology from the University of Kansas, studying avian paleontology and ichnology—trace fossils—as well as anatomy and behavior of modern birds. During this time she began research in China and South Korea, supported by a U.S. Fulbright Grant from 2011-2012 that provided the opportunity to perform extensive research in China.

She has expertise in paleobiology, evolutionary biology, functional morphology, and fossil behavior. Her current research interests are studies of fossil avian anatomy, avian ichnology (the study of preserved behavior known as trace fossils—footprints, burrows, etc.), comparative studies of modern avian anatomy, studies of modern avian footprint production and tracemaking behavior, laser-stimulated fluorescence of fossils, and paleobiodiversity and mass extinction.

Email: amanda.falk@centre.edu

File last updated 6/26/17

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Mark L. Galatowitsch

Photo of Mark L. Galatowitsch
Assistant Professor of Biology Biology Work Office: Young Hall-221 Work Phone: 859.238.5320 Website: http://sites.google.com/site/marklgalatowitsch/
Biography

Mark Galatowitsch joined Centre’s faculty in 2015 as assistant professor of biology.

His research focuses on the strategies aquatic and terrestrial invertebrates use to exploit dynamic environments. Galatowitsch uses a combination of extensive field surveys, field and laboratory experiments, and population genetics to test hypotheses in ecology and evolution. He has studied life-histories of generalist aquatic insects that exist across New Zealand permanent lakes and unpredictable temporary ponds, mass mayfly nymph migrations from Georgia river channels to seasonal floodplain wetlands, and leafhopper behavioral responses to predatory birds in Costa Rica. He enjoys mentoring research students keen to study entomology, freshwater ecology, and applied environmental science topics.

Galatowitsch received a B.S. in biology from Allegheny College, an M.S. in entomology from the University of Georgia, and a Ph.D. in ecology from the University of Canterbury.

Email: mark.galatowitsch@centre.edu

File last updated 9/14/15

Christina Garcia

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Assistant Professor of Biology Centre CollegeBiology Work Young Hall – 124 Work Phone: 859.238.6523
Biography

Christina Garcia joined the Centre College faculty in 2018 as assistant professor of biology.

Garcia earned a B.S. in biochemistry and molecular biology from Centre College, and a Ph.D. of philosophy in cancer biology from Vanderbilt University.

Email: christina.garcia@centre.edu

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Matthew Klooster

Photo of Matthew Klooster
Assistant Professor of Biology Work Young Hall—225 Work Phone: 859.238.6530
Biography

Before coming to Centre, Klooster was a post-doctoral researcher at Harvard University. His research interests are plant population and community ecology, evolutionary-ecology, symbioses, phylogeography, population genetics, genomics, and conservation of rare and endangered species. Klooster graduated cum laude from Xavier University with a B.S. in biological sciences and earned a Ph.D. in biological sciences from the University of Cincinnati.

Since arriving at Centre, Klooster received a National Science Foundation grant in 2011 in collaboration with Dr. Steven Miller (University of Wyoming) to study highly specialized plant-fungal symbioses. The grant has facilitated research opportunities for Centre students and provided funding for a research/teaching post-doctoral fellow. He was named a Centre Scholar in 2013 and served as director of the Bonner Scholars Program from 2013 until 2016. In 2016, in collaboration with Centre colleagues Kyle Anderson, Danielle Kirchner, and Brett Werner, he received a four-year LIASE Grant from the Henry Luce Foundation to pursue novel pedagogical practices integrating contemporary issues of Asia and the environment.

Email: matthew.klooster@centre.edu

File last updated: 10/11/16

Notes

Staff Congress Representative (2015 — 2016)

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Anne E. Lubbers

Photo of Anne E. Lubbers
Professor of Biology Biology Work Young Hall—223 Work Phone: 859.238.5321
Biography

Anne Lubbers is professor of biology at Centre College, where she has taught since 1993.

A plant ecologist, Lubbers has special expertise on factors affecting seed production. Her work has been published in professional journals, including the American Journal of Botany and Ecology.

Lubbers provides her Centre students opportunities for collaborative research. For the last five years she has studied reproductive success in wild ginseng. One or two students work with her each summer as they visit eight forest populations throughout Kentucky of this increasingly uncommon species. One of those students, Karen Trowbridge, subsequently was awarded third place in the biology poster competition at the joint annual meeting of the Tennessee and Kentucky Academy of Sciences in the fall of 2001. This summer Lubbers will continue the process of studying how soil conditions, sunlight, and pollination affect the plant’s ability to produce seed.

Lubbers says of such field work for students: “Whatever field our students go on to pursue, they gain some really important basic skills in this program—how to be organized in collecting data, the importance of being careful when recording numbers or doing lab work, how to interpret the information obtained, how to use a computer for graphing and—especially—how to think logically and concisely.”

Lubbers is a member of the Botanical Society of America, the Kentucky Native Plant Society, the Ecological Society of America, and the Southern Appalachian Botanical Society. She holds a B.S. from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and a Ph.D. from Duke University.

Email: anne.lubbers@centre.edu

File last updated: 8/5/13

Notes

EXPERT

Botany — Plant reproductive ecology — Invasive plants

A plant ecologist with expertise on factors affecting seed production in native plants. Articles published in the American Journal of Botany. Regularly involves her Centre students in collaborative research. Most recent work is on American ginseng; Lubbers and her students are studying how water availability, sunlight, and pollination affect the plant’s ability to produce seed. Interested in invasive plants and teaches one biannual course on plant-herbivore interactions.

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Marie Nydam

Photo of Marie Nydam
Assistant Professor of Biology • Pre-Optometry Advisor Biology Work Young Hall—118 Work Phone: 859.238.6329 Website: www.marienydam.org
Biography

Marie Nydam joined Centre’s faculty in 2012 as an assistant professor of biology. She was named a Centre Scholar in 2016.

Nydam has a B.S. in evolution and ecology from the University of California, Davis. She earned a Ph.D. in evolutionary biology from Cornell University and completed a postdoctoral position at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Nydam studies phylogenetic relationships, speciation, and self/non-self recognition. She studies marine invertebrates in the English Channel and the Mediterranean Sea. She enjoys mentoring research students who are interested in evolutionary biology, genetics, and molecular biology techniques.

Nydam teaches Evolution, Biodiversity, Ecology (BIO 110), Introduction to Genetics (BIO210), Evolutionary Biology (BIO305), and Invertebrate Biology (BIO310).

Email: marie.nydam@centre.edu

File last updated: 5/2/13

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Kelly E. O’Quin

Photo of Kelly E. O’Quin
Assistant Professor of Biology Biology Work Young—121 Work Phone: 859.238.5370
Biography

Kelly O’Quin joined Centre as assistant professor of biology in 2014.

O’Quin’s research focuses on microevolutionary changes in eye development, structure, and function. His study systems include the Mexican blind cavefishes and African cichlid fishes. O’Quin uses genetic crosses and genome sequencing of these fishes to identify mutations responsible for evolutionary changes in eye development, especially as they relate to photoreceptor differentiation. He has published his research with undergraduate co-authors in the journals PLoS ONE, BMC Evolutionary Biology, and Evolution & Development. He enjoys mentoring research students interested in evolutionary biology, genetics, and genomics. O’Quin teaches Introductory Biology, Genetics, Cave Ecology, Biostatistics, and Genomics.

He received a B.S. in biology from Louisiana State University, and a Ph.D. in behavior, ecology, evolution and systematics from the University of Maryland.

Email: kelly.oquin@centre.edu

File last updated: 8/29/16

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Margaret “Peggy” G. Richey

Photo of Margaret “Peggy” G. Richey
Ewing T. Boles Professor of Biology and Biochemistry & Molecular Biology • Chair of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Program • Nursing School Advisor Biology, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Work Young Hall—124 Work Phone: 859.238.5319 Website: web.centre.edu/bio/richey/index.htm
Biography

Peggy Richey is Ewing T. Boles Professor of Biology and Biochemistry & Molecular Biology.

Richey’s primary area of research interest involves the identification of novel chemical inhibitors of bacteria. She has engaged her Centre students in collaborative research on several research projects. Richey also has actively encouraged her students to pursue off-campus research projects, helping them earn placements with short-term or summer projects at major university laboratories throughout the United States.

Richey has published her research in academic journals including Phytopathology, Journal of Bacteriology, and Physiological and Molecular Plant Pathology.

A magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Kentucky, Richey also holds an M.S. and Ph.D. in plant pathology from UK.

Email: peggy.richey@centre.edu

File last updated:1/14/14

Notes

EXPERT

Biochemistry, physiology, and molecular biology of plant disease; the identification of novel chemical inhibitors of bacteria — Long-term research on the testing of chemicals for antibacterial activity against a range of bacteria — Undergraduate science education and research

CONTACT CENTRE ADMISSION

The Admission Office is located in Boles Hall, while the Admission Welcome Center is located on the second floor of Old Centre.

Mailing Address:

Admission Office
Centre College
600 West Walnut Street
Danville, KY 40422

Telephone:

1.800.423.6236
859.238.5350

Fax:

859.238.5373

Email:

admission@centre.edu

Estudiantes y familias hispanohablantes contacten a Kendra Montejos Edwards
859.238.5353