Biology Department News

Recent Posts

Nealen Receives Auditory Neuroscience Research Funding

The grant from the Pennsylvania Lions Hearing Research Foundation will support research investigating cranial vocal feedback to the human cochlea, in support of human speech development in the hearing impaired.

Collaboration Fuels Better, Faster COVID-19 Test

Biology chair Narayanaswamy Bharathan is leading the collaboration between IUP, IRMC, and Takara Bio USA to develop faster COVID-19 tests for rural communities.

Disease Vector Ecology Lab Launches Tick-borne Disease Dashboard for Indiana County

Public Health major Nicholas Seidel, interning with biology professor Tom Simmons’ Disease Vector Ecology Laboratory, has created a dashboard to visualize blacklegged tick seasonality, infection prevalence of pathogens in the blacklegged ticks, and case counts and incidence rates of Lyme disease in Indiana County.

Biology Students and Faculty Publish “Consumer Reports-style” Study to Optimize Tick Collection

Biology majors Emily Welch (MS’19), Anna Manges (BS’20), and Nathan Peters (BS ’19) and professors Joe Duchamp and Tom Simmons determined the best fabric for construction of drags used to collect blacklegged ticks which vector the pathogens causing Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, babesiosis, Borrelia miyamotoi disease, ehrlichiosis, and Powassan virus disease.

Surprising Clue in the Puzzling Evolution of Mammalian Middle Ear

Biology professor Shundong Bi and John Wible, curator of mammals at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, describe a new fossil specimen of a haramiyidan from China’s Middle Jurassic epoch that represents an evolutionary “stepping stone” between Mesozoic fossils and living mammals.

First Non-avialan Dinosaur Found on Embryo-Bearing Nest

Shundong Bi, Department of Biology, and collaborators have discovered a dinosaur preserved sitting atop a nest of its own eggs that include fossilized babies inside.

Biology Student Earle Wins Viewer's Choice Award at Virtual Student Symposium on the Environment

At the 2020 Student Symposium on the Environment, Sierra Earle, a junior in the IUP Biology Department working with Professor Holly Travis, won the Viewer’s Choice Award for the video she created, “Diatom diversity, abundance, and richness among four different habitat types.”

Research Instrumentation Grant Awarded to IUP Faculty

Faculty members Eric Morshhauser (Biology), Jonathan Warnock (Geoscience), Mercan Haddad Derfshi (Fashion Merchandising), and Andrea Palmiotto (Anthropology) have been awarded an NSF Major Research Instrumentation grant to purchase a portable structured white light surface scanner to digitize objects into three dimensions.

Simmons Interviewed by Allegheny Front on Pittsburgh Parks, Lyme Disease Risk, and COVID-19

Tom Simmons (professor of Biology) was interviewed in Schenley Park by Kara Holsopple of the award-winning public radio station Allegheny Front about Lyme disease risk in the four major Pittsburgh regional city parks during the COVID-19 pandemic.