Department of Biology*
WILLIAM M. KIER, Chair
* With recommendation of the department and the approval of the Administrative Board of The Graduate School, special courses and the direction of graduate studies are offered by the staff of the Institute of Marine Sciences, Morehead City, North Carolina.
Albert S. Baldwin, Immunoglobulin Gene Expression
Victoria L. Bautch, Molecular Basis of Development
Kerry S. Bloom, Molecular Genetics
John Bruno, Marine Ecology, Population and Community Ecology
Jeffrey L. Dangl, Genetic and Molecular Analysis of Disease Resistance
Robert J. Duronio, Cell Cycle Control
Patricia G. Gensel, Paleobotany and Morphology
Robert P. Goldstein, Generation of Cell Diversity in Development
Albert K. Harris, Morphogenesis and Embryology
Alan M. Jones, Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology
Joseph J. Kieber, Plant Cell Biology
William M. Kier, Functional Morphology of Invertebrates, Biomechanics
Joel G. Kingsolver, Evolutionary Ecology and Physiological Ecology
Jason D. Lieb, Specificity and Function in Protein-Genome Interactions
Kenneth J. Lohmann, Neuroethology and Invertebrate Zoology
William F. Marzluff, Transcriptional and Posttranscriptional Regulation of RNA Metabolism, Cell Cycle Regulation during Development
A. Gregory Matera, RNA Processing: Biogenesis of Small Ribonucleoproteins
Ann G. Matthysse, Molecular Biology and Plant Pathology
Steven W. Matson, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry
Robert K. Peet, Plant Ecology
Mark A. Peifer, Developmental Genetics
Charles H. Peterson, Marine Ecology
David Pfennig, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Patricia J. Pukkila, Molecular Genetics
Edward D. Salmon, Cell Biology
Jeff Sekelsky, Meiotic Recombination, DNA Repair
Darrel W. Stafford, Developmental Biochemistry
Peter S. White, Plant Ecology
Shawn C. Ahmed, Telomeres, DNA Change and Germline Immortality
Christina L. Burch, Experimental Evolution of Viruses
Sabrina S. Burmeister, Neuroethology
Gregory P. Copenhaver, Plant Genome Biology, Recombination, Centromeres
Corbin D. Jones, Evolutionary Genetics and Genomics
Charles Mitchell, Disease Ecology
Karin S. Pfennig, Ecology, Behavior, and Evolution
Jason W. Reed, Light Signal Transduction in Plants
Steven Rogers, Cytoskeletal Filaments
Lillie L. Searles, Molecular Biology
Maria R. Servedio, Evolutionary Theory
Keith Sockman, Neuroendocrine Control of Reproductive Flexibility
Todd J. Vision, Evolutionary and Computational Genetics
Lauren B. Buckley, Biogeography of Climate Change
Mara C. Duncan, Membrane Trafficking
Terry Furey, High-Throughput Genomic Analysis of Gene Regulation and Cancer
Tyson Hedrick, Biomechanics and Animal Locomotion
Allen H. Hurlbert, Community Ecology, Biogeography
Alain Laederach, Disease-Associated Mutations and Their Effect on RNA Structure
Laura A. Miller, Mathematical Biology, Comparative Biomechanics
Kevin Slep, Cytoskeletal Structure and Dynamics
Sarah R. Grant, Pathogenicity Factors in Pseudomonas syringae
Punita Nagpal, Plant Development
David Straight, Protein-Protein Interactions
James Umbanhowar, Ecosystem Stability and Function
Chris Willett, Molecular Population and Evolutionary Genetics
Elaine Yeh, Nuclear Division in Yeast
Stephen T. Crews, Molecular Genetics
Frank L. Conlon, Xenopus, Mesoderm, Heart, Tbox Genes
Michael A. Resnick, Molecular Genetics
Alan Weakley, Plant Systematics
Edward G. Barry
Aristotle J. Domnas
J. Alan Feduccia
Lawrence I. Gilbert
Max H. Hommersand
Donald W. Misch
Helmut C. Mueller
Clifford R. Parks
Seth R. Reice
Tom K. Scott
Alan E. Stiven
R. Haven Wiley
The Department of Biology offers a program of study leading to a doctor of philosophy degree in biology. Master’s degrees are generally only received by those students who have progressed far enough in the Ph.D. program, but cannot complete the program for various reasons. Special departmental rules and guidelines for advanced degrees are available upon request.
Graduate Programs and Facilities
The Department of Biology is currently housed in three modern buildings, with a fourth building, the Genome Sciences Building, scheduled to open July 2012. The department is equipped with modern instrumentation for research and research training in the diverse biological disciplines represented by the faculty. These include:
Genetics and Molecular Biology: Genetics is both a discipline (the study of heredity) and an experimental approach (manipulation of genes or the genetic material). Today, most geneticists work at the molecular level by manipulating RNA,DNA or entire genomes. Our group is strong in both model organism genetics and genomics. Areas of emphasis include biochemistry and molecular biology, chromosome biology, developmental genetics, genomics, protein synthesis, enzyme mechanics, and plant genetics.
Cell Biology, Development, and Physiology: Developmental biologists address the mechanisms through which cells acquire specialized functions to form complex body plans. These features are accomplished in part through cell proliferation, migration, and shape changes. The department has a strong research program in these areas, which are major topics in cell biology, as well as in other aspects of developmental biology. Areas of emphasis include cytology, mitotic and meiotic mechanisms, histochemistry, experimental morphogenesis, morphogenetic movements, tissue culture, hormones, plant development, signal transduction, functional morphology, biomechanics and neuroethology, and membrane functions.
Evolutionary Biology: Evolution is inherited change in the characteristics of populations over time. Evolutionary biologists seek to explain the remarkable fit of organisms to their environment (adaptation), the origins of diversity, including the formation of new species (speciation), and the relationships among organisms. The department has a strong focus on the genetic and ecological mechanisms of adaptation and speciation.
Ecology: Ecologists study how organisms interact with other organisms and with their physical environment. UNC’s group has strength in behavioral, conservation, community, disease, evolutionary, and marine ecology. Areas of emphasis include population biology, life histories, and ecosystem phenomena in diverse systems.
Behavior and Organismal Biology: Organismal biologists seek to understand the diversity of life forms on Earth by analyzing organismal structure and function. UNC’s Biology Department takes an integrative approach to this research, combining analyses at levels ranging from molecules to whole organisms. The group a lso endeavors to understand the evolution and mechanisms of behavior. It uses theoretical, observational, and experimental approaches in a variety of species, from crawling behavior in sea slugs to communication in birds. Areas of emphasis include social and mating systems of vertebrates, communication, ecology and ontogeny of behavior, predator-prey interactions, marine ecology and oceanography, comparative physiology, neuroethology, functional morphology, and comparative biomechanics.
Plant Biology: The department has an active and diverse group that studies features specific to plants or that uses plant model systems to address questions of broad interest. Areas of emphasis include host-pathogen interactions, signal transduction, development, genomics, and chromosome biology.
After completing required course work in the department, students in marine biology have access to the research facilities of the Institute of Marine Sciences, Morehead City, North Carolina. By cooperative arrangements, deep water research can be carried out through the use of the research vessel of the Duke University Marine Laboratory.
Inter-departmental degree programs in genetics, ecology, neurobiology, and marine sciences offer unusual opportunities for special training through participation of staff from the Department of Biology and many other departments in arts and sciences and health affairs.
UNC has a world-class library system including the Health Science Library which is dedicated to resources related to of biological research. A major research asset is the location of the University, which makes the varied flora and fauna of the Appalachian Mountains, Piedmont Plateau, Coastal Plain, and Atlantic Coast accessible for research and instruction. The department operates a small field station a few miles from the Chapel Hill campus in the Mason Farm Biological Reserve, which includes several hundred acres of upland and floodplain habitats.
The Coker Arboretum and the North Carolina Botanical Garden are of value to students in the study of questions in plant biology. The Herbarium, containing more than 600,000 specimens, is especially rich in collections of the vascular plants and fungi of the Carolinas and the Southeastern United States.
The Highlands Biological Station, administered for the University system by Western Carolina University, is located in the biologically rich mountains at Highlands, North Carolina. Graduate courses offered cover various parts of the mountain biota. Credit may be obtained through UNC–Chapel Hill or Western Carolina University. A limited amount of research support is available on a competitive basis. (See the annual announcement of the Highlands Biological Station.)
The University is a member of the Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS). Financial support is available for students attend ing OTS courses in tropical ecology in Costa Rica.
Additional information about the graduate program including instructions for application is available at www.bio.unc.edu.
Fellowships and Assistantships
Application for admission and graduate appointments, accompanied by credentials and Graduate Record Examination scores, and optionally the Advanced Biology score, should be submitted according to the graduate college deadline (gradschool.unc.edu/programs/degreeprograms/). Applicants interested in genetics, molecular biology, cell biology, development, or physiology should apply using the Biology and Biomedical Sciences Program (BBSP) application portal (www.med.unc.edu/bbsp/welcome.html). Applicants with an interest in evolutionary biology, ecology, behavior, or organismal biology should apply using UNC’s Graduate School application portal (gradschool.unc.edu/admissions/).
All outstanding prospective graduate students who apply for admission are automatically considered for University fe llowships.
More than 45 teaching assistantships are open to graduate students. Duties of assistants include preparation for, and supervision of, laboratory and recitation sections of undergraduate courses. Duties usually require 13 to 15 hours per week including six contact hours in classes and six to nine hours of preparation or other services associated with instruction.
Research assistantships are also available. Salaries and duties are variable as determined by the research needs of faculty supervising the work. Applications for these appointments must be made personally to faculty members directing grant-supported research.
The following awards are specifically for graduate students in the Biology Department.
• The Alma Holland Beers Scholarships are awarded annually to support summer research of students in botany. They are nonservice awards.
• The William Chambers Coker Fellowship is awarded annually to a student or students in the final years of work toward a doctor of philosophy in a botanical field. This is a nonservice award that carries with it an additional supplement for tuition and fees.
• The Mrs. W. C. Coker Fellowship is awarded annually to an outstanding first-year graduate student in plant biology. This is also a nonservice award that carries with it an additional supplement for tuition and fees.
• The H. V. Wilson Marine Scholarship is awarded annually for summer work at a marine laboratory. It is a non-service award.
Courses for Graduate and Advanced Undergraduate Students
The stated prerequisites should be interpreted to read "or equivalent" and may be waived by the course instructor for students who are adequately prepared.
402 Infectious Disease in the Developing World (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 202 and 205. We will explore the challenges of infectious disease in the developing world, focusing on tuberculosis, HIV, and malaria. We will also examine the economics of different approaches to health care.
410 Principles and Methods of Teaching Biology (4). Prerequisites, two of the three biology core courses: BIOL 201, 202, and/or 205. This course will develop the knowledge and skills teachers need to implement inquiry-based biology instruction: rich, conceptual knowledge of biology and mastery of inquiry-based teaching methods.
421L Microbiology Laboratory with Research (2). Pre- or corequisite, BIOL 422. Sterile technique, bacterial growth, physiology, genetics and diversity, and bacteriophage. Research in bacterial genetics.
422 Microbiology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 202. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Bacterial form, growth, physiology, genetics, and diversity. Bacterial interactions including symbiosis and pathogenesis (animal and plant). Use of bacteria in biotechnology. Brief introduction to viruses.
422L Microbiology Laboratory (1–2). Pre- or corequisite, BIOL 422. Sterile technique, bacterial growth and physiology, bacterial genetics, bacteriophage, and bacterial diversity.
423L Laboratory Experiments in Genetics (4). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Experiments using a range of organisms—from bacteria to Drosophila, higher plants, and man—to sample organismal and molecular genetics. One lecture hour, four laboratory hours.
425 Human Genetics (GNET 425) (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 202. Permission
of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Pedigree analysis, inheritance of complex traits, DNA damage and repair, human genome organization, DNA fingerprinting, the genes of hereditary diseases, chromosomal aberrations, cancer and oncogenes, immunogenetics and tissue transplants. Three lecture hours a week.
426 Biology of Blood Diseases (PATH 426) (3). See PATH 426 for description.
427 Human Diversity and Population Genetics (3). Pre- or corequisites, BIOL 201 and 202. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. This course investigates the facts, methods, and theories behind human population genetics, evolution, and diversity. Specifically, it addresses questions of human origins, population structure, and genetic diversity.
430 Introduction to Biological Chemistry (CHEM 430) (3). See CHEM 430 for description.
431 Biological Physics (PHYS 405) (3). See PHYS 405 for description.
434 Molecular Biology (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 202 and CHEM 261. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. In-depth exploration of specific topics in molecular biology from an experimental approach.
439 Introduction to Signal Transduction (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 202 and 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. This course presents an introduction to signal transduction pathways used by higher eukaryotes. Several signaling paradigms will be discussed to illustrate the ways that cells transmit information. Three lecture hours per week.
441 Vertebrate Embryology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 252 or 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Principles of development with special emphasis on gametogenesis, fertilization, cleavage, germ layer formation, organogenesis, and mechanisms, with experimental analysis of developmental processes. Three lecture hours a week.
441L Vertebrate Embryology Laboratory (1). Pre- or corequisite, BIOL 441. Descriptive and some experimental aspects of vertebrate development. Three laboratory hours a week.
443 Developmental Biology (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 202 or 205 and CHEM 261. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. An experimental approach to an understanding of animals and plants. The approach covers developmental processes, molecular, genetic, cell biological and biochemical techniques, with an emphasis on the molecules involved in development.
445 Cancer Biology (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 202 and 205. Selected examples will be used to illustrate how basic research allows us to understand the mechanistic basis of cancer and how these insights offer hope for new treatments.
446 Unsolved Problems in Cellular Biology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. A survey of areas of current interest in cytology, embryology, and genetics with concentration on problems that remain unsolved but that appear to be near solution. Three lecture and discussion hours a week.
447 Laboratory in Cell Biology (4). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Required preparation, a grade of C or better in BIOL 205. Modern methods to study cells, technical skills necessary for research in cell and molecular biology, knowledge of good lab practice, operation of technical instrumen tation. Three lecture and three laboratory hours a week.
448 Advanced Cell Biology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. An advanced course in cell biology, with emphasis on the biochemistry and molecular biology of cell structure and function. Three lecture hours a week.
450 Introduction to Neurobiology (3). Recommended preparation, BIOL 205. Survey of neurobiological principles in vertebrates and invertebrates, including development, morphology, physiology, and molecular mechanisms. Three lectures a week.
451 Comparative Physiology (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 101 and 101L and either PHYS 104 and 105 or PHYS 116 and 117. An examination of the physiology of animals using a comparative approach. Both invertebrate and vertebrate animals are discussed in order to elucidate general principles.
451L Comparative Physiology Laboratory (1). Pre- or corequisite, BIOL 451. The fundamental principles of physiology are explored using physical models, animal experiments, and noninvasive experiments on humans, reinforcing the understanding of concepts presented in lecture.
452 Mathematical and Computational Models in Biology (MATH 452) (4). Prerequisites, BIOL 201 and 202, MATH 231, and either MATH 232 or STOR 155. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. This course will introduce analytical, computational, and statistical techniques, such as discrete models, numerical integration of ordinary differential equations, and likelihood functions, to explore topics from various fields of biology. Laboratory is included.
453 Animal Societies and Communication (3). Pre- or corequisite, BIOL 278. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the pre- or corequisite. Comparative review of animal societies; diversity of social structure, social dynamics, communication, ecology, and evolution of social organization. Three lecture hours a week.
454 Evolutionary Genetics (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 201 and 202. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. The roles of mutation, migration, genetic drift, and natural selection in the evolution of the genotype and phenotype. Basic principles are applied to special interest topics. Three lecture hours a week.
455 Behavioral Neuroscience (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. The neurobiological basis of animal behavior at the level of single cells, neural circuits, sensory systems, and organisms. Lecture topics range from principles of cellular neurobiology to ethological field studies.
457 Marine Biology (MASC 442) (3). See MASC 442 for description.
458 Sensory Neurobiology and Behavior (3). Recommended preparation, BIOL 205. An exploration of sensory systems and sensory ecology in animals. Topics range from neurophysiological function of sensory receptors to the role of sensory cues in animal behavior.
459 Field Biology at Highlands Biological Station (1–4). Prerequisite, BIOL 101. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Content varies. Summer field biology at the Highlands Biological Station focuses on the special faunal and floristic processes and patterns characteristic of the southern Appalachian mountains. Five lecture and three to five laboratory and field hours per week, depending on credit.
461 Fundamentals of Ecology (ECOL 461, ENST 461) (4). Prerequisite, BIOL 201. Students will develop a comprehensive understanding of the field of ecology, including modern and emerging trends in ecology. They will develop literacy in the fundamental theories and models that capture ecological processes; emphasis will also be placed on the relevance of ecology and ecological research for human society.
462 Marine Ecology (MASC 440) (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 201 or 475. Survey of the ecological processes that structure marine communities in a range of coastal habitats. Course emphasizes experimental approaches to addressing basic and applied problems in marine systems.
463 Field Ecology (4). Prerequisite, BIOL 201. Application of ecological theory to terrestrial and/or freshwater systems. Lectures emphasize quantitative properties of interacting population and communities within these systems. Required laboratory teaches methodology applicable for analys is of these systems. Projects emphasize experimental testing of ecological theory in the field. Two lecture and six field hours a week.
464 Global Change Ecology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 201.. Responses of plants, animals, and communities to climate and other global changes, emphasizing ecology, physiology, behavior, and evolution. Investigation of past responses and tools for predicting future responses.
465 Global Biodiversity and Macroecology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 201. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. We will explore global patterns of diversity of plants, animals, fungi, and microbes, and the insights gained by taking a statistical approach to describing these and other broad-scale ecological patterns.
469 Behavioral Ecology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 201. BIOL 278 recommended but not required and can be taken concurrently. Behavior as an adaptation to the environment. Evolution of behavioral strategies for survival and reproduction. Optimality and games that animals play. Three lecture hours a week.
471 Evolutionary Mechanisms (4). Prerequisites, BIOL 201 and 202. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. Introduction to mechanisms of evolutionary change, including natural selection, population genetics, life history evolution, speciation, and micro- and macroevolutionary trends. Three lecture hours plus two hours of laboratory/recitation per week.
472 Introduction to Plant Taxonomy (4). Prerequisites, BIOL 271 and/or 272. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. Introduction to the taxonomy of vascular plants. Principles of classification, identification, nomenclature, and description. Laboratory and field emphasis on phytography, families, description, identification, and classification of vascular plant species. Three lecture and three laboratory hours a week.
473 Mammalian Morphology and Adaptation (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 252 or 276. An in-depth examination of the morphological adaptations of mammals. Particular attention will be given to osteology, the locomotor system, and craniofacial structures.
473L Mammalian Morphology Laboratory (1–2). Prerequisite, BIOL 252 or 276L. Laboratory includes a detailed dissection of a representative mammal, emphasizing the common structure of mammals. Opportunity for independent investigation of specific functional adaptations of specialized forms.
475 Biology of Marine Animals (4). Prerequisites, BIOL 101 and 101L. Required preparation, one additional course in biology. An introduction to the major animal phyla emphasizing form, function, behavior, ecology, evolution, and classification of marine invertebrates. Three lecture and three laboratory hours per week.
476 Avian Biology (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 101 and 101L; corequisite, BIOL 476L. A study of avian evolution, anatomy, physiology, neurobiology, behavior, biogeography, and ecology. Three lecture hours a week.476L Avian Biology Laboratory (1). Corequisite, BIOL 476. Techniques for the study of avian evolution, ecology, and behavior with emphasis on North Carolina birds. Three laboratory or field hours a week, including one or two weekend field trips.
478 Invertebrate Paleontology (GEOL 478) (4). See GEOL 478 for description.
479 Special Topics in Organismal Biology at an Advanced Level (3). Special topics in organismal biology at an advanced undergraduate or graduate student level.
479L Laboratory in Organismal Biology: Advanced Special Topics (1–2). Laboratory in special topics in organismal biology for advanced undergraduates and graduate students.
490 Special Topics (3). Permission of the instructor. Content will vary. Three lecture and discussion hours per week by visiting and resident faculty.
501 Ethical Issues in Life Sciences (3). Permission of the instructor. A consideration and discussion of ethical issues in life sciences including cloning humans, genetic engineering, stem cell research, organ transplantation, and animal experimentation. Counts as a course numbered below 400 for biology major requirements.
514 Evolution and Development (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 201, 202, and 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. The course examines the mechanisms by which organisms are built and evolve. In particular, it examines how novel and complex traits and organisms arise from interactions among genes and cells.
522 Bacterial Genetics (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 422. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Genetics of eubacteria with emphasis on molecular genetics including regulation of gene expression, transposons, operons, regulons, plasmids, transformation, and conjugation. Computer analysis of DNA sequences.
524 Strategies of Host-Microbe Interactions (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. There is great variety in how microbes colonize and live with their hosts. The course will summarize strategies of pathogenicity, symbiosis, commensalism, and mutualism. Evolutionary, cellular, and molecular aspects will be analyzed.
525 Computational Analyses and Resources in Genomics (4). Prerequisites, BIOL 202, COMP 116, and STOR 155. Permission of the instructor for graduate students. Computational techniques for the analysis of large-scale genomics data. Databases and online genomic resources. Programming for standard file processing and development of analysis pipelines. Course includes a computational laboratory.
526 Computational Genetics (4). Prerequisite, BIOL 202. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Honors course. Prior computer science and statistics course work recommended. A study of the fundamental concepts underlying DNA/protein alignment, gene finding, expression analysis, genetic mapping, phylogenetics, and population genetics. Includes a one-hour laboratory.
527 Special Topics in Quantitative Biology (3). Prerequisites, COMP 114 and MATH 232 or 283. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. Special topics in quantitative biology for advanced students. The course counts as a quantitative biology course for the major.
527L Laboratory in Special Topics in Quantitative Biology (1). Laboratory in quantitative biology for advanced students. The laboratory will involve mathematical analysis and modeling of biological systems and processes.
528 Systems Biology of Genetic Regulation (4). Prerequisites, BIOL 202, COMP 116, and MATH 232 or 283. The course will focus on mathematical and informatics approaches to modeling biological systems in particular gene networks. Students are expected to have some experience with programming.
529 Clinical and Counseling Aspects of Human Genetics (GNET 635) (3). See GNET 635 for description.
531 Senior Seminar in Basic Research Leading to Drug Discovery in HIV Treatment or Prevention (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. This course will explore basic science approaches and primary scientific literature addressing the development of therapeutics or prevention of HIV infection or symptoms.
535 Molecular Biology Techniques (4). Permission of the instructor. Recommended preparation, BIOL 434. Experiments with bacterial phage, nucleic acid isolation and properties, recombinant DNA techniques, and DNA sequencing. Additional hours in laboratory will be necessary to complete assignments.
542 Light Microscopy for the Biological Sciences (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 205 for undergraduates. Permission of the instructor. Introduction to various types of light microscopy, digital and video imaging techniques, and their application in biological sciences.
551 Comparative Biomechanics (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 101 and 101L, and PHYS 104 or PHYS 116. Recommended preparation, PHYS 105. The structure and function of organisms in relation to the principles of fluid mechanics and solid mechanics.
552 Behavioral Endocrinology (3). Undergraduates need permission of the instructor to enroll. The study of the interactions among hormones, the brain, and behavior from how hormones shape the development and expression of behaviors to how behavioral interactions regulate endocrine physiology.
555 Paleobotany (GEOL 555) (4). Prerequisites, BIOL 101 and 101L, and BIOL 271 or 272. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. An introduction to the morphology, stratigraphic occurrence, and evolutionary relationships of fossil plants. Both macrofossils and microfossils wil l be considered. Three lecture and three laboratory hours a week.
556 Seminar on the Evolution of Animal Flight (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 201 and PHYS 104 or 116. Additional required preparation, a 400-level BIOL course or permission of the instructor. An examination of the origin and evolution of animal flight and how scientific understanding of this topic has changed from the mid-1800s to the present day.
561 Ecological Plant Geography (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 101 or GEOG 110. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Description of the major vegetation types of the world including their distribution, structure, and dynamics. The principal causes for the distribution of plant species and communities, such as climate, soils, and history will be discussed.
562 Statistics for Environmental Scientists (ECOL 562, ENST 562) (4). See ECOL 562 for description.
563 Statistical Analysis in Ecology and Evolution (ECOL 563, ENST 563) (4). Prerequisites, MATH 231 and STOR 151. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. Application of modern statistical analysis and data modeling in ecological and evolutionary research. Emphasis is on computer-intensive methods and model-based approaches. Familiarity with standard parametric statistics is assumed.
565 Conservation Biology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 201. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. The application of biological science to the conservation of populations, communities, and ecosystems, including rare species management, exotic species invasions, management of natural disturbance, research strategies, and preserve design principles.
567 Evolutionary Ecology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 471. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Advanced topics in the evolution of form and function. May include issues in life-history evolution, evolutionary physiology, evolutionary morphology, and the evolution of complexity. Three lecture hours per week.
568 Disease Ecology and Evolution (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 201 and MATH 231. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. Recommended preparation, one course above 400 in ecology or evolution. An advanced class covering the causes and consequences of infectious disease at the levels of whole organisms, populations, communities, and ecosystems.
579 Organismal Structure and Diversity in the Southern Appalachian Mountains (4). Permission of the instructor. An examination of the field biology of selected fungi, plants, or animals of the Appalachian Mountains. The morphology, taxonomy, ecology, life history, and behavior of the organisms will be explored both in the laboratory and in the field.
590 Advanced Special Topics in Biology (3). Special topics in biology for advanced undergraduate students and graduate students.
590L Laboratory in Advanced Special Topics in Biology (1). Laboratory at an advanced level in special topics in biology. Students should have had considerable previous laboratory experience.
602 Professional Development Skills for Ecologists and Biologists (ECOL 602) (3). See ECOL 602 for description.
621 Principles of Genetic Analysis I (GNET 621) (3). Prerequisite for undergraduates, BIOL 202. Permission of the instructor for undergraduates. Genetic principles of genetic analysis in prokaryotes and lower eukaryotes.
622 Principles of Genetic Analysis II (GNET 622) (4). See GNET 622 for description.
624 Developmental Genetics (GNET 624) (3). Permission of the instructor for undergraduates. Genetic and molecular control of plant and animal development. Extensive reading from primary literature.
625 Seminar in Genetics (GNET 625) (2). Permission of the instructor for undergraduates. Current and significant problems in genetics. May be repeated for credit.
631 Advanced Molecular Biology I (BIOC 631, GNET 631, MCRO 631) (3). See GNET 631 for description.
632 Advanced Molecular Biology II (BIOC 632, GNET 632, MCRO 632) (3). See GNET 632 for description.
639 Seminar in Plant Molecular and Cell Biology (2). Permission of the instructor for undergraduates. May be repeated for credit. Current and significant problems in plant molecular and cell biology are discussed in a seminar format.
642 Current Topics in Cell Division (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Permission of the instructor of students lacking the prerequisite. An advanced course in cell and molecular biology integrating genetic, biochemical, and structural aspects of the cell cycle. Principles derived from a variety of biological systems. Extensive reading of classic papers as well as recent literature.
643 Molecular Mechanisms of the Cytoskeleton (3). Prerequisites, BIOL 205 and CHEM 430. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. This seminar examines the cytoskeletal systems of eukaryotes and prokaryotes via primary literature. Architectures of cytoske letal components are compared and contrasted along with their regulators, nucleators, and molecular motors.
648 Palynology (5). Permission of the instructor. A consideration of various aspects of palynology, including the morphology, structure, development, systematics, evolution, preparation techniques, and analysis of living and fossil pollen grains, spores, and other palynomorphs. Two lecture and six laboratory hours a week.
649 Seminar in Cell Biology (2). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. May be repeated for credit.
657 Biological Oceanography (ENVR 520, MASC 504) (4). See MASC 504 for description.
659 Seminar in Evolutionary Biology (2). Permission of the instructor. Advanced topics in evolutionary biology.
661 Plant Ecology (4). Prerequisite, BIOL 201. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Consideration of terrestrial, vascular plant ecology including environmental physiology, population dynamics, and community structure. Laboratory stresses collection and interpretation of field data. Three lecture and three laboratory hours a week.
662 Field Plant Geography (2). Prerequisite, BIOL 561 or 661. Permission of the instructor. Intensive literature and field study of the plant geography and ecology of a selected region. Weekly seminar-style discussion followed by approximately nine days of field experience. May be repeated for credit.
663 Population Ecology (3). Prerequisite, BIOL 201. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. An advanced treatment of topics in animal population and community ecology, stressing analytical and interpretation approaches. Topics will vary from year to year, and the course may be repeated with credit. Three lecture and discussion hours a week.
669 Seminar in Ecology (ECOL 669) (2). Prerequisite, BIOL 201. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. May be repeated for credit.
691H Senior Honors Thesis (3). Permission of a faculty research director and three credit hours of BIOL 395 in the same laboratory required. Students with six hours of BIOL 395 must take BIOL 692H. Required of all candidates for honors or highest honors in their senior year. See description on the department’s undergraduate Web page.
692H Senior Honors Thesis (3). Permission of a faculty research director and six credit hours of BIOL 395 in the same laboratory. Students with six hours of BIOL 395 must take BIOL 692H. Required of all candidates for honors or highest honors in their senior year. See description on department’s undergraduate Web page. With approval of the instructor and The Graduate School, biology majors who need fewer than 15 hours to complete the bachelor’s degree and who have at least a B average in biology courses may take one or two courses at the 600–800 level for the purpose of later receiving graduate credit.
Courses for Graduate Students
701 Current Topics in Biology (2). Consideration of current topics in biology. Biology faculty will present individual research seminars followed by discussion.
702 Special Topics in Biology for Graduate Students (3–4). This course is designed to allow graduate students to explore areas of biology outside their direct area of specialization. Three credits for lecture only. Four credits for lecture and lab.
703 Recent Advances in Biology (3). A consideration of the methods and literature involved in the latest advances in selected areas of biology.
758 Molecular Population Biology (MASC 742) (4). See MASC 742 for description.
801 Seminar in Biological Sciences (2). Advanced topics in interdisciplinary biological sciences.
810 Seminar in College Science Teaching (2). This interactive course will help graduate students develop the knowledge and skills needed to implement student-centered science instruction at the university level. Participants will support one another in creating a teachable unit, a personal teaching philosophy statement, and a course syllabus.
829 Seminar in Quantitative Biology (3). Advanced seminar in quantitative biology. Topics will vary.
831 Seminar in Insect Physiology, Biochemistry, and Endocrinology (2). Permission of the instructor. Current topics and discussion in insect physiology, biochemistry, and endocrinology.
832 Seminar in Molecular Biology (2). Prerequisite, BIOL 202. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
841 Seminar in Embryology (2). Prerequisite, BIOL 205. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
842 Seminar in Cell Biology and Biochemistry (2). Permission of the instructor. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
850 Seminar in Neurobiology (NBIO 850, PHCO 850, PHYI 850) (3). See NBIO 850 for description.
852 Seminar in Plant Systematics (2). Permission of the instructor. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
853 Seminar in Plant Morphology and Anatomy (2). Permission of the instructor. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
854 Seminar in Neurophysiology (2). Permission of the instructor. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance. May be repeated for credit.
855 Seminar in Invertebrate Zoology (2). Prerequisite, BIOL 475. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance. May be repeated for credit.
856 Seminar in Vertebrate Evolutionary Biology (2). Permission of the instructor. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance. May be repeated for credit.
857 Seminar in Comparative Animal Behavior (NBIO 857) (2). Permission of the instructor. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance. May be repeated for credit.
858 Seminar in Comparative Physiology (NBIO 858) (2). Prerequisite, BIOL 451. Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
859 Seminar in Marine Biology (2). Permission of the instructor. Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance. May be repeated for credit.
861 Statistical Analysis in Ecology and Evolution using R (1). Prerequisite, STOR 155. Graduate standing in biology, ecology, or genetics required. Introduction to statistical analysis and modeling of ecological and evolutionary data using the R programming environment.
890 Special Seminar (2). Permission of the instructor. Consideration of special topics in biology. May be repeated for credit.
891 Graduate Seminar in Biology (2). Graduate standing or permission of the instructor. A course to provide public lecture experience to advanced biology students. Students present individual research seminars based upon their dissertation projects. Lectures are critiqued by fel low students and biology faculty. Required of all candidates for the degree in biology.
Courses numbered 900 and above are designed for applicants for advanced degrees. Each course requires permission of the instructor or the research director. Each may be repeated for two or more semesters for credit.
901 Introduction to Graduate Research (1–21). Graduate research for six weeks in two laboratories. Designed primarily to acquaint first-year students with research techniques and to assess their propensity for research. Arranged by mutual agreement of students and faculty members during fall orientation. May be repeated once for credit. Six to nine hours per week.
921 Research in Genetics (GNET 905) (1–21). See GNET 905 for description.
931 Research in Molecular Biology (2–21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
932 Research in Plant Molecular Biology (2–21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
941 Research in Cytology and Cell Biology (2–21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
942 Research in Embryology (2 –21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
943 Research in Physiology: Cellular, Comparative, Neurophysiology (2–21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
951 Research in Neurobiology (NBIO 951, PHCO 951, PHYI 951) (3–12). See NBIO 951 for description.
952 Research in Ethology and Animal Behavior (2–12). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
953 Research in Marine Sciences (MASC 940) (2–21). See MASC 940 for description.
954 Research in Marine Sciences on Mollusca, Crustacea, Ichthyology, or Oceanography (1–21). Permission of the department. At the Institute for Marine Sciences, Morehead City, NC.
955 Research in Vertebrate or Invertebrate Zoology (2–21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
957 Research in Plant Systematics (2–21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
958 Research in Plant Morphology and Anatomy (2–21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
959 Research in Paleobotany (2–21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
961 Research in Ecology (2–21). Topic determined by instructor and announced in advance.
Special Graduate Registration.
992 Master’s Thesis M.A. (3–9). Course for graduate students expecting to receive the degree of Master of Arts in Biology.
993 Master’s Thesis in Biology (3–21).
994 Doctoral Dissertation in Biology (3–21).