ILS faculty Fellows
Dr. David A. O'Brochta (Ph.D. UC Irvine, 1984)
Professor, Institute for Bioscience and Biotechnology Research (IBBR), and UMD Entomology.
Dr. O'Brochta's research focuses on insect molecular and physiological genetics of mosquitoes. He has and continues to be involved in the development and application of insect genetic technologies that can be used for studying basic questions of insect biology and for genetically modifying insects for practical applications. Dr. O'Brochta heads IBBR's Insect Transformation Facility that specializes in producing genetically modified insects for researchers worldwide and directs the National Science Foundation-funded project Insect Genetic Technologies Research Coordination Network. He is also editor-in-chief of the Royal Entomological Society's journal Insect Molecular Biology.
Dr. Kathryn (Kate) Monzo (Ph.D. University of Texas at Austin, 2009)
Dr. Monzo's graduate research focused on the cell biology of early animal development. Using the fruit fly as a model system, she investigated the function of Fragile X mental retardation protein during the early cleavage stage and identified a novel role for the protein during cell division. In graduate school, she was also a teaching assistant for an upper division cell biology course and organized a popular graduate student-lead journal club. She completed her postdoctoral research at the National Institutes of Health in the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development studying blood vessel development in zebrafish.
Dr. Jonathan Z. Simon (Ph.D. UC Santa Barbara, 1990)
Professor, Biology and of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and of The Institute for Systems Research.
Dr. Simon received his Ph.D. and postdoctoral training in theoretical physics before he switched his research program to theoretical and applied neuroscience. His current research investigates how the auditory cortex in the human brain perceives, analyzes, and memorizes complex sounds such as speech and other natural sounds.
Dr. Raymond J. St. Leger (Ph.D. University of Bath, UK, 1985)
Professor, UMD Entomology
Dr. St. Leger's research focuses on the biochemistry, molecular biology, and genomics of insect pathogens, and their exploitation as a source of genes for innovative biotechnological uses. Dr. Leger presented the Founders Lecture at the 2009 Society of Invertebrate Pathology Meetings. In 2009-2010, Dr. St. Leger received the Distinguished Scholar-Teacher award from the UM campus.
Dr. Jason D. Kahn (Ph.D. UC Berkeley, 1990)
Associate Professor, UMD Chemistry and Biochemistry
Dr. Kahn is a biophysical chemist who studies DNA structure, flexibility, looping, and topology using a variety of physical and biochemical methods. His work has applications to diagnostics and to protein-DNA nanostructures. At Maryland since 1994, he has mentored a Gemstone team that tried to improve conditions for algal growth for biofuel production, and he has mentored the UMaryland iGEM synthetic biology team since its 2014 inception. He teaches general chemistry, biochemistry, and graduate nucleic acids and regulation classes. He is a member of the Editorial Board of the Biophysics Journal.
Dr. Edward Eisenstein (Ph.D. Georgetown University, 1985)
Associate Professor, Fischell Department of Bioengineering
Fellow, Institute for Bioscience and Biotechnology Research
Dr. Eisenstein’s research is focused on engineering biological systems to understand molecular mechanisms and to make them more useful for a range of applications in health, energy and biomanufacturing. Synthetic biology as well as structural, biophysical and molecular genetic approaches are being used to develop next-gen plants with enhanced immune and stress response systems. He has been an advisor to the University of Maryland’s award-winning iGEM team since its inception in 2014.
Dr. John P. Fisher (Ph.D. Rice University, 2003)
Department Chair and Fischell Family Distinguished Professor, UMD Engineering
As Director of the Tissue Engineering and Biomaterials Laboratory, he investigates biomaterials, 3D printing, stem cells, and bioreactors for the regeneration of lost tissues, particularly bone, cartilage, vasculature, and skeletal muscle. In 2012 Dr. Fisher was elected Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, and in 2015 Dr. Fisher visited the National University of Ireland, Galway as a Fulbright Fellow. Dr. Fisher is currently the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Tissue Engineering, Part B: Reviews, and Continental Chair Elect of the Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Society International - Americas Chapter.
Dr. Daniel M. Levin (Ph.D. University of Maryland, 2008)
Assistant Professor, UMD Department of Teaching and Learning, Policy and Leadership
Dr. Levin specializes in science pedagogy and teacher inquiry. He has taught high school science and held positions as a research biologist at the National Institutes of Health and Harvard University. Currently, he is Co-principle investigator on a Maryland State Department of Education grant funding the design of a certification program in elementary STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics).
Dr. Joe Redish (Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1968)
Professor, UMD Department of Physics
Dr. Redish is a world-renowned theoretical nuclear physicist who almost twenty years ago started doing physics education research on how to reform physics teaching for biology majors. For the past five years, he has been collaborating with biologists to build a discipline-based biology education research group. Among his many awards are: the Robert A. Millikan Award from the American Association of Physics Teachers in 1998, the NSF Director's Award as a Distinguished Teaching Scholar in 2005, and a campus Distinguished Scholar Teacher Award in 2006.