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Biology at TWU

Welcome to the TWU Biology Department.

Our mission is to promote understanding of the processes of life, its evolution, and its diversity and to prepare students for careers or advanced graduate/professional training in biological sciences.

We are delighted to have you look over our programs and perhaps choose us for your academic career.

We congratulate the following:

Dr. Michael Bergel for his distinction of having the cover of The Journal of Biological Chemistry February 12th, 2016, issue. Sincere gratitude is expressed to Ph.D Candidate Sanil Sansar for his expertise in creating the cover art.

• In addition, please take note of the peer reviewed work published in the same issue: “Mitotic Activation of a Novel Histone Deacetylase 3-Linker Histone H1.3 Protein Complex by Protein Kinase CK2.” Hemangi Patil, Carrie Wilks, Rhiannon Wold Gonzalez, Sudheer Dhanireddy, Heather Conrad-Webb, and Michael Bergel. JBC Papers in Press, DOI 10.1074/jbc.M115.643874

The symbolic mitotic spindle fibers, composed of confocal microscopy images, demonstrate the colocalization of HDAC3 and H1.3 proteins to the polar microtubules and to the spindle poles in HeLa cells during various mitotic stages. The antibodies used for the indirect immunofluorescence staining were: anti-HDAC3 (green), anti-histone H1.3 (red), anti-Eg5 (polar microtubules motor protein) (green/red), and the DNA stain—Hoechst (blue).

  • 2016 New Investigator Research Enhancement Program:
    • Dr. Dayna Averitt, Effects of Estrous Cycle on Trigeminal Pain
    • Dr. Christopher Brower, TDP43 Toxicity and Its Degradation by the N-end Rule Pathway to Prevent Neurodegeneration
    • Dr. Tina Gumienny, Determining the Roles of Three Cellular Trafficking Regulators in TGF-beta Signal Regulation   


  • TWU Biology Fall 2015 Bachelor of Science Undergraduates


  • TWU Biology Fall 2015 Masters Graduates: 
    • Bettye Irene Lopez, M.A.T
    • Angela Ese Agogo, M.S., Implementing Team-Based Learning Principles of Biology to Determine Effects on Students Content Knowledge, Thinking Skills, and Attitudes about Teamwork
    •  Devika Bose, M.S., Comparative Study of Different Cell Types Infected by Cytomegalovirus
    •  Kayle Anne MacNeill Salinda Reimer, M.S.
    •  Elizabeth Schwartz-Brown, M.S.
    •  Sarah Elizabeth Wehner, M.S., Measuring Changes in Content Comprehension and Attitudes toward Informal Science Learning from Three New Learning Modules Implemented at the Trinity River Audubon Center


  • TWU Biology Fall 2015 Doctor of Philosophy Graduates:
    • Dr. Gagan Bajwa, Respiratory Viruses Promote Glycolysis:  The Critical Role of Metabolism in Human Plasmacytoid Dendritic Cell Antiviral Responses.
    • Dr. LaTondra J. Lawrence, The Role of HMGN1 in Nucleotide Excision Repair of Human Cells:  Mechanisms and Possible Applications.
    • Dr. Sonali Pandhe, Regulation of Expression from the m142 Promoter of Mouse Cytomegalovirus.
    • Dr. Singhal Barkha, The Role of Tumor Necrosis Factor--Alpha in the Adult Leydig Cell Apoptosis upon Ethane Dimethan Sulfonate (EDS) Adminstration


  •  Fall 2015 Experiential Student Scholar winners:
    • Graduate: Paramita Basu, mentor: Dr. Camelia Maier; “Learn By Doing - Exploring Anti-Cancer and Antioxidant Activities in Morus alba Buds and Wood.”

    • Undergraduate: 1.) William Benton, mentor: Dr. Dayna Averitt; “Hormone Replacement Therapy in a Rat Model of Temporomandibular Joint Disorder Pain.”   2.) Sidney Cruz, mentor: Dr. Camelia Maier; “Planting Native Red Yucca and Bee Balm in the TWU Butterfly Garden for Pollination Studies.” 3.) Sharon Hoang, mentor: Dr. Michael Bergel; “Exploring the Toxicity of Novel Amidoximes JJMB7 in Mice.” 4.)  Chelsea Matewe, mentor: Dr. Camelia Maier; “Stop Station for Monach Butterflies in the TWU Gardens.”

  • Fall 2015 Botany Winners at Graduation Party: First prize – Walter, the Watermelon Snowman by Perla Herrera,


Second prize – Mama Bird and Baby Bird by Luz Rodriguez,


Third prize – Pepo Express by Janet Rodriguez,


 Honorable Mention – Miracle by Laura Cortina


  • Fall 2015 Molecular Cell and Gene Expression Winners at Graduation Party:  First prize--Cell Cookies by Angely Ruiz


Second prize--Savory Membrane by Yedira Mendoza

Third prize--Mitochondria by Ionsei Hastings

Honorable mention--Sweet Membrane by Sheida Mazloom


Areas of Study (PREFIX)

  • Bacteriology (BACT)
  • Biology (BIOL)
  • Botany (BOT)
  • Science (SCI)
  • Zoology (ZOOL)


Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or if you plan a visit to the campus.

DiAnna L. Hynds
Professor and Interim Co-Chair

Marlene did neurobiological research as an undergraduate at TWU

Course Rotation (pdf)

THECB 18 Doctoral Characteristics

Biology seminars are held every Friday from 3:00 - 4:00. See the TWU Biology calendar of events for specific topics.

Current Seminar Spring 2016

Jan 29:  Dr. Venu Cheriyath, Emerging Roles of Mitochondrial G1P3 in Breast Cancer Cell Metastasis

Feb  5:  Dr. Ali Shilatifard, Enhancer Malfunction in Cancer

Feb 12:  Dr. Andreea Trache, Integrin Mediated Cell Adhesion Regulates Actin Cytoskeleton Organization