Spring 2016 | Biology | Marquette University

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Alumni Feature
Awards and Recognition
Bioethics Internship
Launch Internship Program
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Faculty Feature: James Maki

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The College of Arts and Sciences is continually seeking to provide innovative and transformative educational experiences for our students. The Department of Biological Sciences is excited to announce two new collaborative, interdisciplinary majors.

        • The new Environmental Studies Major (BA) provides a multi-disciplinary and in-depth education of the ecology of natural ecosystems and the processes by which humans influence, exploit, evaluate, value, mitigate and restore their environment. Students may also choose to minor in Environmental Sciences.


  • The new Bioinformatics Major (BS) is a collaboration between biological sciences and the mathematics, statistics and computer science department. This major lives at the leading edge of science and technology, mining big data generated by biological researchers to create meaningful theories and solve problems in the life sciences.


Sarea Wang Poster Presentation Fourth year graduate student Sarea Wang traveled to San Diego in April for Experimental Biology 2016, and presented a poster there on her work in the Robert Fitts Lab. Sarea also volunteers on a weekly basis at Wisconsin International Academy, whose mission is to bridge cultures by recruiting international students. Her goal is to help Chinese high schoolers cross language and cultural barriers to explore and learn from nature and science.​
Recently graduated senior, Kevin Sanchez (Biological Sciences, ’16) was second author on a publication based on his work at the Duke University Marine Biological Laboratory last summer. The paper, “Entrainment of the Circadian Rhythm in Egg Hatching of the Crab Dyspanopeus sayi by Chemical Cues from Ovigerous Females” was published in the Biological Bulletin in February 2016. Kevin Sanchez at Duke Marine Lab


Lisa Petrella, C. elegans
At the end of March, Dr. Lisa Petrella attended the Evolutionary Biology of Caenorhabditis and other Nematodes meeting at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories on at Cold Spring Harbor, New York.  Held at a state of the art research campus on a beautiful harbor this meeting was all about the evolution of different kinds of small round worms.  Dr. Petrella has been expanding her research program from traditional developmental genetics methods to increasingly include evolutionary genetics approaches.  In addition to learning about all sorts of advances in the field, Dr. Petrella was a co-author with Jaime Lisack, who attended the SRP program at Marquette in the summer of 2014.  One of the most exciting aspects of the meeting were a number of presentations that gave detailed information about one of the newest discovered species of nematode, C. sp34.  C. sp 34 genetically is the sister species of the most commonly studied nematode, C. elegans, and therefore represents a resource for new and exciting evolutionary biology studies in the field.


Bertrand Wintrust Business Lunch Dr. Michael Schlappi was interviewed on the Wintrust Business Lunch to discuss the business of urban agriculture and why he’s growing rice paddies on rooftops. (The interview with Dr. Schlappi runs from 12:30 until 21:15 on the podcast)
WUWM featured a story on Lake Effect about Dr. Robert Fitts and Dr. Sandra Hunter’s NIH funded research on how decreased muscle mass can lead to increased fatigue in aging populations, and how a novel exercise program can address these effects. Fitts and Hunter Muscle Aging Research
Fitts honored at MUBB game
Dr. Bob Fitts was also recognized on December 27th at the MU Basketball game for his work and achievements. (Pictured: Fitts and wife Mary Ellen, along with their four children, and three of their grandkids)


Dale Noel


Dr. Dale Noel was invited to present a seminar as part of the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee Biological Sciences spring 2016 colloquia. Dr. Noel’s talk was titled, “Why bacteria build so many different aerobic respiratory chains and how they regulate them:  It’s not just about oxygen.”


Krassi Hristova Antibiotic Resistance
Dr. Krassi Hristova’s research on antibiotic resistant bacteria in the Milwaukee Harbor was featured in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.



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Biological Sciences Department

Marquette University, Wehr Life Sciences
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P.O. Box 1881
Milwaukee, WI 53201-1881
(414) 288-7355