Department of Biological Sciences

A Kent State University neurobiologist is one of four researchers in the U.S. awarded grants by the Jérôme Lejeune Foundation for projects to improve cognition in individuals with Down syndrome.

Kristy Welshhans, assistant professor of biological sciences at Kent State, will examine how an extra copy of a particular gene associated with Down syndrome affects connectivity in the brain, causing intellectual disability. The Jérôme Lejeune Foundation awarded Welshhans a grant of 28,000 euros.

Dr. Heather Caldwell recently received a $400,000.00 grant from the National Science Foundation to fund her research. This research project will examine how prenatal hormones can reorganize brain circuits and impact behavior.  Understanding how these hormones work during development will provide important insights into the species-specific behaviors that underlie social behavior and social structure.  The goal of this project is to determine how the neurohormone oxytocin acts during development to organize neural structures important for displays of aggressive behavior in adulthood.

Emily Munger was awarded the prestigious Distinguished Student Leadership Award by the College of Arts & Sciences on Thursday, April 24th. Emily's major is Biological Anthropology with a minor in Biological Sciences and has a GPA of 3.96.

Please join us in congratulating Emily on her accomplishments!!

A team of Kent State University students and faculty has been awarded a $15,000 grant as part of a sustainability design competition funded by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Last year, a group of faculty representing three disciplines — biology, geology and architecture/environmental design — submitted an application for the EPA’s People, Prosperity and the Planet (P3) grant competition. The P3 competition encourages college students to design innovative projects outside of the classroom in order to support the sustainability of the planet. 


Kent State University and the Holden Arboretum will use a recently awarded National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to study the impact people have on vital organisms living in places where water and land meet in Northeast Ohio.

The National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC) has named Allison Moats, a recent graduate of the Honors College and the College of Arts and Sciences at Kent State University, as a Portz Scholar for 2014. Allison is a native of Ravenna, Ohio, and received her bachelor’s degree from the Department of Anthropology. Each year, the Portz Prize recognizes outstanding undergraduate honors theses submitted by honors college students from across the country.

Aggressive behavior in animals may result in posturing, teeth baring or challenges related to protecting territory, offspring or food. In humans, it can lead to violence and death, and the causes are not always readily apparent. But where does it originate?

Kent State University faculty members have been awarded nearly $2.5 million in funding from the National Science Foundation for research over the next three years in biology, physics and the science of liquid crystals.

The awards will fund basic research on:

The University Fellowship is awarded annually to advanced doctoral students to recognize excellent scholarship and research potential.  University Fellowship recipients are able to commit their time to dissertation research or writing. Approximately 15 University Fellowships are awarded each year. 


Dr. Julio Morales-Medina, a postdoctoral researcher in Dr. Heather Caldwell’s laboratory in the Biological Sciences Department, was selected to attend the "European Pain School at the University of Siena" as a Scholar.