School of Biological Sciences

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The School of Biological Sciences offers exceptional opportunities to learn, work, and collaborate across levels of biological organization and styles of research. Faculty research interests span the complete spectrum of biological phenomena and disciplines, from biochemistry to global environmental change. This breadth of research interests has led to development of two focused, yet overlapping, graduate training programs: Molecular, Cellular, and Evolutionary Biology (MCEB) and Ecology Evolution and Organismal Biology (EEOB).


Biology professor wins Packard Fellowship

October 15, 2018 - Dr. Dr. William Anderegg has been awarded the prestigious Packard Fellowship for his research on the effects of climate change and drought on forests. “Dr. Anderegg’s pioneering work elegantly combines field measurements with complex mathematical modeling to better predict the response of forests to drought,” says Denise Dearing, director of the U’s School of Biological Sciences. “He is the perfect fit for an award from the Packard Foundation especially in light of the recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change stating that we have less than 12 years to take action to lessen the most serious effects of climate change". Read UNews Story

Biology Professor publishes paper in Nature

September 19, 2018 - Congratulations to William Anderegg on his paper "Hydraulic diversity of forests regulates ecosystem resilience during drought" being published in Nature. Co-authors on the paper are David Bowling and John Sperry.

Biology Professor on NPR Science Friday

September 15, 2018 - Dr. Nalini Nadkarni was a featured scientist on NPR's radio show, Science Friday, which was broadcast from the Eccles Theater on September 15th. She spoke both about her forest canopy research and her work to bring science to underserved public audiences, including incarcerated men and women in Utah. Forest ecologist Nalini Nadkarni pioneered the exploration of tree canopies—the “new frontiers” of the forest, using hot air balloons, rock climbing gear, and cranes. Listen to NPR Interview...

Honey, I shrunk the LouseBuster...

September 6, 2018- Ten years ago School of Biological Sciences professor Dale Clayton and his lab invented the “LouseBuster” - external site.  This FDA-cleared medical device uses blasts of heated air to cure head lice infestations on kids (and their parents!)  To date, it has treated more than 400,000 people in 350 “Lice Clinics of America” (LCA) across the U.S. and abroad.   LCA is now releasing a miniaturized “OneCure” device for families that do not live near an LCA clinic Story on Good4Utah...

Biology graduate student Article published

September 6, 2018 - Monte Neate-Clegg from the Şekercioğlu Lab has had the first paper of his PhD published in BioTropica titled "Elevational changes in the avian community of a Mesoamerican cloud forest park". Tropical mountains are centers of bird diversity but they are at risk from climate change. Monte's study found that, over ten years, the bird community shifted upslope in a Honduran cloud forest park. Higher elevations accrued bird diversity while lower elevations lost it, and several key cloud forest species moved higher up the mountains. It is likely that warming temperatures are driving birds upslope while deforestation removes suitable habitat at lower elevations. 

Congratulations to Shannon Nielsen-Staff Excellence

August 24, 2018 - Shannon Nielsen, Graduate Advisor for the School of Biological Sciences has been honored with the Staff Excellence Award. This award will be presented to Shannon by President Ruth Watkins and CHRO, Jeff C. Herring. The University Staff Excellence Awards (USEA) program was established in 1992 to recognize superior service and ongoing contributions by the University of Utah's full-time staff employees. The 8 DSEA winners are the pool from which the recipients of the University Staff Excellence Awards are chosen. All will be recognized in their respective areas and at the USEA luncheon hosted by President Watkins.

Biology Dept becomes the school of biological sciences

August 21, 2018 - At a ribbon cutting ceremony, Dr. Denise Dearing inaugurated the new School of Biological Sciences. Our new School of Biological Sciences boasts more than 50 research-active faculty who are conducting ground-breaking research in areas including plant biology, ecology, genetics, physiology, neuroscience and molecular biology.  To support these efforts, our faculty have, in the past year, secured $17 million in federal funding –this funding helps to fuel Utah’s economy. Our faculty do not do research in isolation, but rather they engage with over 200 graduate students, postdocs, technicians, research faculty and, importantly, undergraduate research assistants in the pursuit of advancing our understanding of the biological world. With the cutting of this ribbon, we open a new exciting chapter in the biological sciences at the University of Utah.

The School’s new leadership team, our associate director Leslie Sieburth, and 3 Division Heads, Michael Shapiro, Julie Hollien and Dave Bowling

Biology number one in UnderGrad majors

February 14, 2018 - According to the University of Utah's Winter 2018 Imagination Report, Biology is the now number one in the top 10 undergraduate majors at the U.

Biology Newsletter - Our DNA

November 15, 2017 - Just released “Our DNA” News! The Department of Biology’s Fall 2017 issue. Check out our “Faculty Spotlight”, Sophie Caron: How sensory input is remembered; Ryan Watts of Denali: Quest to conquer neurodegenerative illnesses; and “Alumni Spotlight”, Randy Rasmussen of Biofire, and much more! If you would like to be added to the mailing list, please email David Pace, A;umni/Advancement Director for the School of Biological Sciences. See Fall 2017 Newsletter

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