Jason Z. Morris
B.A., Biology - Yale University, Summa cum laude
Ph.D., Genetics - Harvard University
Post-doctoral Fellowship - Lehmann Laboratory, Skirball Institute of Biomolecular Medicine
Fellowship Funding - American Cancer Society, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Genetics of Development research
I have spent my career studying the genetic control of development. As a graduate, student, I earned my Ph.D. studying the genetic control of the dauer fate decision in C.
elegans, which led me to my work on cloning the dauer developemt/life span regulator, age-1. As a post-doc, I worked on genes required for oogenesis in Drosophila., and I followed up on several of those genes in my own lab, along with my undergraduate collaborators, at Fordham College at Lincoln Center. My lab is currently focused on the gene fried, which encodes a HEAT Repeat protein. fried mutants wander off their food source precociously and die as larvae. We have used CRISPR to insert a tag into the endogenous fried gene and we are currently determining the expression pattern and subcellular localization of the protein fried encodes.
I have worked on two ethics projects. The first is
pairof papers discussing why substance ontology cannot be used to assign moral status to the early stages of human development. The second is a pair of publications I coauthored with my wife, Marilyn Morris, on how Internal Review Boards might better function if they were organized according to Virtue Ethics principles.
2011 Fordham University Teaching Award in the Natural and Life Sciences
2011 Fordham-Funded Research Scholar Award
Fellowships and Grants
National Institutes of Health/National Institute of General Health and Medicine R15 Award GM090173-01 for Molecular Identification and Functional Characterization of fried, a Gene Required for Growth and Fertility in Drosophila 2010-2013
Faculty Research Grant: May 2009-March 2010 Identification Characterization of fried.
Faculty Research Grant: May 2008-March 2009: Mapping and Characterization of fried
National Institutes of Health/National Institute of General Health and Medicine R15 Award GM074735-01 for Characterization and Molecular Identification of Benedict, a regulator of Drosophila Endoreplication: 2005-2008
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Post-Doctoral Fellowship: 2000-2003.
American Cancer Society Fellowship: 1998-2000.
Faculty Research Grant: May 2004-May 2005: Mapping and Characterization of benedict
Faculty Challenge Grant: September 2004-May 2005: Science Honors Seminar Series
Teaching in the core:
- Honors Natural Science I: Matter/Energy interactions
- Honors Natural Sciences 2: Logic and Information
- Diverse Biology/Shared Humanity
Teaching upper level science electives:
- Cell and Developmental Biology
- Molecular Biology
Morris, JZ. 2012. Substance ontology cannot determine the moral status of embryos. Journal of Medicine and Philosophy: doi: 10.1093/jmp/jhs026.
Morris, JZ, Kruyer, A, Bergman L, Moffitt O, Siletti K, McCord ,Persky R. Drosophila gatA mutants mistranslate the mitochondrial genome, up-regulate AMPK, and down-regulate S6 Kinase to arrest larval growth. In Preparation.
Morris, JZ, Bergman L, Kruyer A, Guigova A, Gertsberg M, Arias R, Pogorzelska M. 2008. Mutations in the Drosophila mitochondrial tRNA aminotransferase, bene/gatA, cause growth defects in mitotic and endoreplicating tissues . Genetics 178: 979-987.
Morris JZ, Hong, A, Lilly, M, and Lehmann R. 2005. twin, a CCR4 homolog, regulates cyclin poly(A) tail length to permit Drosophila oogenesis. Development:132: 1165-1174.
Morris, JZ. “Arrested Development and Bad Eggs: genetics of growth and development in Drosophila.” Fordham University Faculty Day Talk, Bronx, NY, February 2012
Kimberly Seoane, Henrique Valim, Jason Morris. “Identification of CG31320 as the gene disrupted in fried mutants. 52nd Annual Drosophila Research Conference, Chicago, Il, March 2012
Morris, JZ. “Identification and analysis of genes required for Drosophila oogenesis and growth.” Fordham College at Rose Hill Biology Lecture, Bronx, NY, March 2011
Carlisdania Mendoza, Guarav Saharia, Lillian Chiu, Alison E. Lindsay, Jason Morris. “Genotypic and phenotypic characterization of the Drosophila mutant, fried.” 51st Annual Drosophila Research Conference, San Diego, CA, March 2011
Jason Z. Morris and Jennifer Ma. “fried mutants exhibit defects in oogenesis and larval and pupal development.” Cell Cycle Meeting, Cold Spring Harbor, NY, May 2010.
Kimberly Siletti, Thomas McCord, Anna Kruyer, Leah Bergman, Olivia Moffitt, Christopher O’Connor, Jane Mueller, Joseph Carnevale, Rebecca Persky and
Morris, JZ. “Analysis of the biochemical and cellular defects caused of gatA loss-of-function mutants in Drosophila larvae.” 49th Annual Drosophila Research Conference, Chicago, IL, March 2009.
Thomas McCord, Kimberly Siletti, Rebecca Persky and Morris, JZ. “Mapping and analysis of fried, a gene required for egg chamber maturation, larval growth and puparial development.” 49th Annual Drosophila Research Conference, Chicago, IL, March 2009.