Natural Sciences Research

Faculty Research Interests

Dr. Mark Botton:  In collaboration with Dr. Hamilton, I study the responses of marine invertebrates to environmental stresses such as temperature, osmotic shock, and pollution. In particular, we plan to continue our studies with horseshoe crab embryos and larvae, with emphasis on the roles of heat shock proteins (Hsp's) and other biochemical responses to physiological stress.

Dr. Martin DiGrandi: My interest is using medicinal chemistry to improve the biological activity of natural products for the treatment of viral infections and cancer; the total synthesis of natural products.

Dr. Deborah Luckett: My research interest involves mammalian aging and human genetic disorders.

Dr. Robert Madden: My general area of interest is the sensory foundation of animal orientation and navigation. My present work involves arthropods, which provide excellent models for behavioral and neurobiological studies. I will be continuing work on honeybee response to magnetic fields at the Calder station. Possible projects at the LC campus this summer include response to magnetic field in Drosophila, use of time-varying visual information by honeybees, and olfactory learning in honeybees.

Dr. Jason Morris: My area of interest is the genetic regulation of growth and development of the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster. My lab currently focuses on fried, a gene required for oogenesis and larval and pupal development.  

Dr. Joan Roberts:  With Dr. Dan-Ning Hu (New York Eye and Ear Infirmary), I examine the potential damage of various agents in the eye and attempt to block such damage with non-toxic antioxidants.

Dr. Guy Robinson: My research is in paleoecology, a multidisciplinary approach to reconstructing past landscapes and environments. I mainly work with core or excavation samples taken from wetlands to address questions concerning climate, vegetation cover, as well as human and large animal presence. I also manage Fordham’s Aero-allergen monitoring station, which takes air samples on a daily basis from March through October, posting daily reports on pollen and mold spores in the tri-state area.

Dr. Grace Vernon: I study defensive mechanisms that operate in the hemocytes of both healthy lobsters and those suffering from a bacterial infection described as “Brown Shell” disease.  For example, we use immunohistochemical techniques to localize and identify enzymes within the hemocytes.  We plan to investigate other processes such as apoptosis.

Dr. Ellen van Wilgenburg: I conduct research in ecology, evolutionary biology and behavior, with a specific focus on the behavioral and chemical ecology of insects. My current research investigates the impacts of urbanization on behavior and the evolutionary process. Research in my group encompasses a wide range of species, including ants and spotted lanternflies.