Department of Biology

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Associate Professor of Biology and Department Chair; Affiliate Faculty of Environmental Science and Studies
McAllister Hall 365A

Dr. Borer’s research emphasizes physiological plant ecology and plant conservation. Current projects include flowering dogwood’s influence in ecological Ca cycling, conservation of seaside alder, Georgia trillium, and native milkweeds, analysis of plant roots in caves, and plant mapping. Other projects examined invertebrates in Ca cycling, nutrient resorption during leaf senescence, red spruce decline, and cave ecology and conservation. Student participation is central in all projects. Dr. Borer mentors student assistants in Biology’s teaching greenhouse, and is faculty advisor for Society of Outdoor Life and Exploration and the Eco Club.

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Visiting Lecturer of Biology
McAllister 365B

Dr. Cipollini’s long-term research programs focus on Longleaf pine and American chestnut restoration. Much of his other research focused on plant-animal-microbe interactions mediated by secondary chemicals, and on sexual dimorphism and sex ratio variation in dioecious plants. He has directed research with well over 100 students on a broad range of lab, field, and study abroad projects. Students have also gained prescribed burn certification and have assisted as part of the longleaf pine project.

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Henry Gund Professor of Biology
McAllister Hall 363A

Prof. Conn’s research program includes parasitic and other infectious diseases, insect disease vectors, and invertebrate invasive species that cause environmental problems around the world. His work in invertebrate zoology spans freshwater environments from the Everglades to the Great Lakes, and marine biology from the Caribbean to the Arctic. Students in his research program work on the Berry campus as well as more distant locations. With his students, he takes a One-Health approach, integrating biomedical, veterinary, and environmental perspectives.

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Assistant Professor of Biology
McAllister 382A

Dr. Conn researches antagonistic relationships that involve plants. Half of her work focuses on parasitic plants from the Orobanchaceae family and addresses questions about the genes that enable them to interact with hosts. Dr. Conn also studies the relationship between American chestnut trees and the fungal blight that has driven them to functional extinction.

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Associate Professor of Biology
McAllister Hall 382B

Dr. Hall’s interests are in infectious zoonotic diseases, epidemiology, disease ecology, and the One Health approach to population health. He works largely with the protozoan Trypanosoma cruzi (Chagas Disease) and its vectors in the southeastern United States. He has also researched the natural reservoirs for Toxoplasma gondii (toxoplasmosis) in aquatic environments. Dr. Hall serves as the Director of Berry’s One Health minor program, the first such program at the undergraduate level in the world.

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Clinical Assistant Professor of Health Professions and Pre-Health Advisor
McAllister Hall 324
Professor of Biology; Affiliate Professor of Biochemistry
McAllister Hall 364A

Dr. Morgan’s research focuses on coral reefs. His research include physiology of starfish, corals and sea anemones responding to chemical pollution, and coral diseases. To date, more than 50 student researchers have worked in his lab acquiring important lab skills in molecular biology. Dr. Morgan also offers biology majors an opportunity to study coral reef ecology in Roatan, Honduras.

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Professor of Biology
McAllister Hall 366B

Dr. Mowry’s research focuses on animal ecology. He is the founder of the Atlanta Coyote Project, which studies coyotes as integral members of southeastern wildlife communities. Students are actively involved in wildlife-based research projects with Dr. Mowry on the Berry College campus, in metropolitan Atlanta, and along the coasts of Georgia and South Carolina. He teaches courses in zoology, ecology, and conservation biology.

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Associate Professor of Biology
McAllister 363B

Research in the Poole lab focuses on the symbiotic relationship between cnidarians, such as corals, sea anemones and jellyfish, and photosynthetic organism called dinoflagellates. Specifically, our work is aimed at understanding the molecular and cellular processes that regulate both the establishment and breakdown (bleaching) of cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbiosis. Berry students are involved in every aspect of the research projects in my lab from question generation to preparing manuscripts for publications.

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Associate Professor of Biology
MAC 362B

Dr. DeLacy Rhodes is a microbiologist with a concentration on microbial pathogenesis. Her research interests focus on disease-causing microbes, and her lab involves investigating the prevalence of different vector-borne bacterial and parasitic pathogens, along with biofilm formation by different species of streptococci important in animal health. Students who join the Rhodes lab are involved in all aspects of research, and she typically mentors 2-5 students in her research lab per year and has published three papers containing student coauthors.

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Visiting Assistant Professor, Biology
McAllister 362 A

Dr. Saylor’s research utilizes live fishes to answer eco-physiological questions linked with stress physiology, thermal ecology, bioengineering & biomimetics, traits-based (multivariate) analyses, and mathematical modeling of laboratory-derived data. Research projects are prioritized based on regional impact and global appeal. I work alongside students to generate ethically-sound, publication-worthy research, that can inform global fish conservation. I also encourage creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills to better prepare students for a career in biology.

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Assistant Professor, Biology
McAllister 366 A

Dr. Sykes’ research connects somatic health disparities and psychopathology using preclinical mouse models.

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