Biographies of Lecturers
Bean | Burger | Cheng | Duncan | Falk | Gilchrist | Glod | Heindel | Iovine | Jedlicka | Lopresti | Lowe-Krentz | Maas
Marzillier | Perry | Reuben | Saldanha | Sands | Simon | Skibbens | Vavylonis | Ware | Wynne
- Barry Bean, Ph.D. - coming soon!
- R. Michael Burger, Ph.D.received his BA from Ithaca College, his PhD from the University of Texas and received postdoctoral training at the University of Washington Medical School and the University of Munich. His research has been supported by grants from national and international funding agencies that include a Ruth Kirstein National Research Service Award from the National Institutes of Health and Research Fellowship from the Alexander von Humboldt Society of Germany. His research focuses on the neurobiology of hearing with an emphasis on electrophysiological techniques. The objectives of his work include resolving the synaptic and systems level function of auditory brain circuitry. Dr. Burger has published in several prestigious journals including the Journal of Neuroscience, the Journal of Neurophysiology, and the Journal of Comparative Neurology. Dr. Burger is currently an Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences at Lehigh.
- Xuanhong Cheng, Ph.D. has a long-standing interest in developing and applying engineering tools, including micro/nanotechnology, chemical and electrical approaches to study biological problems, especially those related to whole cells. Her research emphasis has been on biomaterials, surface modification, surface science, cell-surface interaction, biological microelectromechanical systems (BioMEMS) and global health diagnostics. She received her bachelor’s degree in biology from Wuhan University, China, her master’s degree in electrical engineering, and her doctorate in bioengineering both from the University of Washington. Dr. Cheng came to Lehigh from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, where she was a postdoctoral fellow.
- Kelli Duncan, Ph.D. received her B.S.A degree in Biological Sciences at the University of Georgia and a Ph.D. in Neurobiology and Behavior from Georgia State University. At Georgia State University, she was supported by a National Research Service Award from the National Institute on Deafness and other Communication Disorders (NIDCD). She is currently a post-doctoral researcher in the laboratory of Dr. Colin J. Saldanha at Lehigh University, where she studies the role of hormones following traumatic brain injury and their effects on neuroinflammation and neuroprotection. She also teaches Behavioral Endocrinology, Endocrinology, and Immunology and the Brain at Montclair State University.
- Matthias Falk, Ph.D. - Coming soon!
- James Gilchrist, Ph.D. - Coming soon!
- John Glod, MD, Ph.D. graduated from Lehigh University in 1988 with a B.S. in biochemistry. He then went on to obtain his M.D. and Ph.D. in pharmacology from the University of Colorado. He is currently an assistant professor in the departments of pediatrics and pharmacology at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School of The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in New Brunswick, N.J. He is a practicing pediatric oncologist and his laboratory studies the interaction between various cellular components within the tumor microenvironment.
- Ned Heindel, Ph.D. is a Professor of Chemistry at Lehigh where his research has involved the development of new drugs and diagnostic devices. Over four decades he and his students have worked on ten therapeutic targets including toxic shock syndrome, Alzheimers disease, cancer, infectious diseases, vesication, psoriasis, vitiligo, arthritis, tooth decay, and menstrual dysfunction. Five drug products on which he and his team have worked went into human clinical trials and two have become commercial products. Ned received his PhD in Organic Chemistry from the University of Delaware and completed an NSF Postdoctoral Fellowship in Medicinal Chemistry at Princeton University. He has taught at Ohio University and Marshall University before coming to Lehigh and his research has been funded by the American Cancer Society, the NIH, the NSF, and the U.S. Army Medical Command. Ned has consulted and carried out contract research for six major pharmaceutical companies. He is the recipient of the Brady Award for Cancer Research and the Henry Hill Award for Achievements in Medicinal Chemistry. At Lehigh Ned teaches courses in medicinal chemistry, pharmaceutics, and organic synthesis.
- M. Kathryn Iovine, Ph.D.
received B.S. degrees in Biology and Chemistry at Carnegie Mellon University and a Ph.D. in Molecular Cell Biology from Washington University in St. Louis. She completed post-doctoral research training in the laboratory of Dr. Stephen L. Johnson in the Genetics Department at Washington University, and was supported by a National Research Service Award from the National Institute of Child Health and Development (NICHD). Research in the Iovine lab focuses on the role of direct cell-to-cell communication in regulating bone size and shape. Since arriving at Lehigh, Dr. Iovine received an early career research award (K22) from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research and her research is currently funded by the NICHD. Dr. Iovine is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Lehigh University.
- Sabrina Jedlicka, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and Bioengineering. She received a B.S. in Biological and Agricultural Engineering and Chemical Science from Kansas State University, and her M.S.E. and PhD in Engineering from Purdue University. She is interested in biomaterials and device development for stem cell maintenance and differentiation. Her laboratory studies involve examination of stem cell behavior on mechanically tuned substrates, development of artificial ECM, and synthesis of new material preparations for in situ tissue engineering. She teaches courses in bioengineering, biomimetic materials, nanocharacterization, and genetic engineering
- Daniel Lopresti, Ph.D. received his bachelor's degree from Dartmouth in 1982 and his Ph.D. in computer science from Princeton in 1987. After completing his doctorate, he joined the Computer Science Department at Brown and taught courses ranging from VLSI design to computational aspects of molecular biology. He went on to help found the Matsushita Information Technology Laboratory, and later also served on the research staff at Bell Labs. In 2003, Dr. Lopresti joined the Computer Science and Engineering Department at Lehigh where his work focuses on fundamental algorithmic and systems-related questions in pattern recognition, with applications in bioinformatics, document analysis, and computer security. This past summer, he collaborated with Drs. Stefan Maas (Biological Sciences) and Ian Laurenzi (Chemical Engineering) as well as a student research team to develop computational techniques for searching large genetic databases for evidence of RNA editing events, a part of Lehigh's Biosystems Dynamics Summer Institute funded by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI). Other of his projects have been funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).
Dr. Lopresti is co-director of the Lehigh Pattern Recognition Research (PatRec) Lab. He has authored over 100 publications and holds 21 U.S. patents.
- Linda Lowe-Krentz, Ph.D., is a Professor in the Biological Sciences Department. She earned her PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Northwestern University. She then carried out research in cancer biochemistry at the Chicago Medical School. Her current research is focused on signal transduction and wound repair in the vascular system. Among other things, she teaches biochemistry of metabolism and a graduate course on signal transduction and cancer.
- Stefan Maas, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, came to Lehigh from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2003, where he served as a post-doctoral research scientist. He earned his doctorate from the University of Heidelberg (Germany) and his master’s degree from the Free University of Berlin. Maas has had extensive research experience at institutions such as the Max-Planck Institutes for Medical Research and Molecular Genetics, and has received fellowships such as the Anna Fuller Fellowship in Molecular Oncology. He has published extensively and presented at national and international conferences such as the Gordon Research Conferences, and the American Association for Cancer Research Annual Meeting. His main research interests are in molecular genetics and the generation of complexity in nature.
- Jutta Marzillier, Ph.D. is heading the Genomics/ Proteomics Facility in the Department of Biological Sciences at Lehigh University, offering DNA sequencing, quantitative RT-PCR, microarrays, and protein analysis. She earned her master’s degree from the University of Giessen and her doctorate from the University of Heidelberg (Germany) and did her postdoctoral training at the Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA. She then joined start-up biotechnology companies investigating the utilization of extracelluar matrix proteins for growth and expansion of human embryonic stem cells. She came to Lehigh in 2003. Currently, she is also a co-investigator with Dr. Dmitri Vezenov (Chemistry) focusing on the development of ‘Force Spectroscopy Platform for label free Genome Sequencing’ funded by NIH.
- Susan Perry, Ph.D. - coming soon!
- J. Reuben, Ph.D. - coming soon!
- Colin Saldanha, Ph.D. is curious about how hormones reorganize the brain under natural and pathological conditions. Using songbirds that dramatically alter the architecture of their brains throughout life, he tries to understand how estrogens: are provided to specific targets, find their receptors, and with other signaling molecules, affect the structure and function of the adult brain.. His research is supported by the National Institutes of Health, the Alzheimer’s Association, and the American Heart Association. Colin earned his doctorate at Columbia University and trained at the Brain Research Institute, UCLA School of Medicine prior to joining the Department of Biology at Lehigh in 2001, where he is now an Associate Professor. He instructs undergraduates, graduate students, and postdoctoral trainees in the Scientific Method through supervised individual projects in the laboratory. He also teaches Integrative and Comparative Biology, Comparative Physiology, Hormonal Correlates of Neuroplasticity, and Sexual Determinism and Differentiation.
- Jeffrey Sands, Ph.D. is a senior professor and former chair of the Department of Biological Sciences. He earned his undergraduate degree in physics from the University of Delaware and his doctoral degree in biophysics from Penn State University. He joined the faculty of Lehigh University in 1973. In his 34 years at Lehigh, Sands has taught courses ranging from introductory physics to advanced viral genetics, and has been recognized for excellence in teaching several times throughout his career. In 1982, he was the first recipient of the College of Engineering's Service Teaching Award. He received the Donald B. and Dorothy L. Stabler Foundation Award for professional excellence in 1983 and the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for distinguished teaching by a senior member of the faculty in 1999. Most recently, in 2007, the Lehigh alumni class of 1997 presented Sands with the Deming Lewis Award for having “most significantly influenced its members’ educational experience.” Over the course of his Lehigh career, Sands and his research students have published over 50 journal articles in biophysics, molecular biology, and virology. Throughout the 1970’s, ‘80’s, and ‘90’s, his experimental research program was supported by grants from the NIH (Fogarty Senior International Fellowship), NSF, DOE, USDA, and several pharmaceutical companies. Currently, he consults and collaborates in the area of virus epidemiology, evolution, and vaccine development. Throughout his career, Sands has played a major role in helping lead Lehigh forward in the life sciences. He co-founded the Ph.D. program in molecular biology in 1975, chaired the Bioengineering Task Force in 1983, served two previous terms as Department Chair in the 1980’s and 1990’s, and was Program Director for the first three Undergraduate Science Education grants to Lehigh from HHMI, from 1989 through 2002. Professor Sands is currently an Associate Dean for the College of Arts & Sciences.
- Neal G. Simon, Ph.D., Professor of Biological Sciences, has over 25 years research experience in behavioral neurobiology. His research in drug development, hormone-neurotransmitter interactions, and behavioral regulation has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Ben Franklin Northeast Tier Technology Partnership, the Life Sciences Greenhouse of Central PA, and the H.F Guggenheim Foundation, and private corporations. Dr. Simon serves on foundation and scientific advisory boards and consults for biotechnology companies. Dr. Simon received a B.A. with honors from the State University of New York at Binghamton, the M.S. and Ph.D. from Rutgers University, and was a National Research Service Postdoctoral Fellow at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. In 1996, he served as a Distinguished Research Professor at Université Louis Pasteur in Strasbourg, France.
- Robert Skibbens, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor in Biological Sciences. He received his Ph.D. in 1994 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He went on to pursue his Post-doctoral studies first at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and then at the Carnegie Institution of Washington. Dr. Skibbens joined Lehigh University in 1999. Since then, he has served on numerous panels including review panels for the NIH, NSF, ACS and the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs for the Dept of Defense. Dr. Skibbens’ lab focuses on issues of chromosome segregation and cell cycle regulation – research supported by awards from the NIH, NSF and the Komen for the Cure Breast Cancer Foundation.
- Dimitrios Vavylonis, Ph.D. Vavylonis joined Lehigh as Assistant Professor in physics in 2006 following work as a postdoc in Columbia's department of chemical engineering and Yale's department of molecular, cellular, and developmental biology. He is performing research in the area theoretical cellular biophysics, developing mathematical models of actin cytoskeleton dynamics in close collaboration with experimentalists. Vavylonis received his doctorate and master¢s degree in physics from Columbia University and his bachelor¢s degree in physics from the University of Athens. His work in theoretical soft matter physics and biophysics has been published in journals such as Molecular Cell, Physical Review Letters, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
- Vassie Ware, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Biological Sciences, received her BA from Brown University, her MPhil and PhD from Yale University, and did her postdoctoral training at Brown University. Her laboratory studies species-specific differences in ribosome maturation in eukaryotic cells, with special interests in ribosomal RNA (rRNA) processing and rRNA-ribosomal protein interactions. Dr. Ware is the Co-director of the HHMI-sponsored undergraduate education initiative at Lehigh. She also serves as Co-director of the Distance Education MS Molecular Biology Program and as the Chair of the Infrastructure Committee in the Department of Biological Sciences. Dr. Ware teaches courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels, primarily in the areas of molecular genetics and molecular cell biology.
- Ryan D. Wynne, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences at St. Thomas Aquinas College. Ryan received his BA in biochemistry/chemistry from East Stroudsburg University, his PhD in biochemistry from Lehigh University and did his postdoctoral training at the University of Rochester. His past research focused on the role estrogen plays in protecting the brain from degeneration following injury. Ryan’s current research focuses on understanding how hormones shape both the structure of the vertebrate brain as well as behavior.