Upcoming Events

    Welcome to the Department of Biology

    We take great pride in both our teaching and our research endeavours. Our Department is home to faculty and researchers with research interests in ecology, environmental biology, physiology, microbiology, cellular biology and molecular biology. Our scientific facilities include an aquatics facility, a field station in the Cypress Hills, the Environmental Quality Analysis Laboratory (EQAL), and the recently established Institute of Environmental Change and Society (IECS).  IECS provides world-class infrastructure and research expertise in environmental sciences via state-of-the-art microscopy, proteomics and genomics facilities. Additionally, we frequently collaborate with researchers at the Royal Saskatchewan Museum, the Saskatchewan Disease Control Laboratory and several other scientific organizations in Southern Saskatchewan.

    Our department offers high quality undergraduate and graduate programs. The undergraduate programs have strong hands-on components as many courses include laboratories developed and overseen by four full-time laboratory instructors. Junior and senior students also benefit from small classes (10 – 30 students). We have an active honours program, a co-op program and many opportunities for students to participate in research projects. Accessible, modern research facilities put our PhD and MSc students at the forefront in their fields. Our graduate students benefit from working in a close-knit, supportive environment that encourages innovative science.


    Seminar Schedule

    Fall 2015 Seminar Schedule

    The fall 2015 seminar schedule is available on the resource page.

    Course Change

    Attention undergrads! Please note upcoming schedule changes

    The Animal Physiology and Plant Physiology courses will be switching semesters starting 2016-17 academic year.

    Course Semesters in which the course will be taught
    Animal Physiology Fall 2015 Winter 2017 Winter 2018
    Plant Physiology Winter 2016 Fall 2016 Fall 2017

    As well, Animal Physiology will become a 300-level course (BIOL 378) starting with the 2016-17 year, and Cell Biology (BIOL 288) will be a pre-requisite for Animal Physiology.

    Course Change

    Biology Faculty Host the Canadian Society of Microbiologists conference

    Chris Yost, Andrew Cameron and John Stavrinides hosted this annual conference at the U of R on June 15-18, 2015. The 200 conference participants attended sessions in diverse topics such as Aquatic Microbiology, Molecular Epidemiology and Antimicrobial Therapies. The conference started with a half-day Education Workshop, and ended with a special lecture sponsored by the Canadian Journal of Microbiology.
    Photo courtesy of Rae Graham - U of R Photography. Left to right, Dr. Chris Yost, Dr. Andrew Cameron and Dr. John Stavrinides.


    Biology student wins 2015 University of Regina Retirees Legacy Scholarship

    Nicole Lerminiaux was recently awarded the 2015 University of Regina Retirees Legacy Scholarship. To win this $6000 scholarship Nicole had to have a greater than 80% average with a full class load, be active in her community and be nominated by a faculty member. Several Biology students have won this scholarship since its inception in 1988 including Jennie McLaren, Craig Soutar and Jared Wolfe. Nicole has also been awarded an NSERC USRA for 2015.

    Recent Publications

    Gendron, F, Alqahtani, S.N., Alkholy, S.O., Haque, D., and Ferreira, M.P. 2015. Native/Aboriginal students use natural health products for health maintenance more than other university students. International Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 1(3): 1-9

    Ferreira, M.P., Palmer, J., McKenna, B., and Gendron, F. 2015. A traditional elder’s anti-aging cornucopia of North American plants. Foods and dietary supplements in the prevention and treatment of disease in older adults. Edited by R.R. Watson, Academic Press, Elsevier. Oxford, UK. pp. 3-11.

    Vanderwel, M.C., Slot, M., Lichstein, J.W., Reich, P.B., Kattge, J., Atkin, O.K., Bloomfield, K.J., Tjoelker, M.G., Kitajima, K. 2015. Global convergence in leaf respiration from estimates of thermal acclimation across time and space. New Phytologist 207: 1026-1037.

    Spriggs, R.A.,Vanderwel, M.C., Jones, T.A., Caspersen, J.P., Coomes, D.A. 2015. A simple area-based model for predicting airborne LiDAR first returns from stem diameter distributions: an example study in an uneven-aged, mixed temperate forest. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 45: 1338-1350.

    Finlay K., Vogt R. J., Bogard M., Wissel B., Tutolo B, Simpson G., and P. Leavitt. 2015. Decrease in CO2 efflux from northern hardwater lakes with increasing atmospheric warming. Nature 519: 215-218 doi10.1038/nature14172.

    Klüg, B. J. and R. M. Brigham. 2015. Changes to metabolism and cell physiology that enable mammalian hibernation. Springer Science Reviews. DOI 10.1007/s40362-015-0030-x.

    Goring S, Dawson A, Simpson GL, Ram K, Graham RW, Grimm EC, Williams, J.W. (2015) neotoma: A Programmatic Interface to the Neotoma Paleoecological Database. *Open Quaternary* 1, Art. 2. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/oq.ab

    Ludlow, S.M., R.M. Brigham and S.K. Davis. 2015. Oil and gas development has mixed effects on the density and reproductive success of grassland songbirds. Condor 117: 64-75.

    Vogt, R.J., S. Sharma, and P.R. Leavitt. 2015. Multi-decadal regulation of algal abundance and water quality in a large continental reservoir by climatic, hydrologic and trophic processes. J. Great Lakes Res. doi/10.1016/j.jglr.2014.11.007.

    Manzon, R.G., Holmes, J.A., Youson, J.H. 2015. Metamorphsois. In: Lampreys: Biology, Conservation and Control. Ed. M.F. Docker. Fish and Fisheries Series. Springer.

    Reyer, C.P.O., Brouwers, N., Rammig, A., Brook, B.W., Epila, J., Grant, R.F., Holmgren, M., Langerwisch, F., Leuzinger, S., Lucht, W., Medlyn, B., Pfeifer, M., Steinkamp, J., Vanderwel, M.C., Verbeek, H., Villela, D.M. 2015. Forest resilience and tipping points: approaches and challenges. Journal of Ecology 103: 5-15.

    Steve Juggins, Gavin L Simpson, and Richard J Telford. 2015. Taxon selection using statistical learning techniques to improve transfer function prediction. The Holocene Vol 25, Issue 1, pages 130-136. doi:10.1177/0959683614556388.

    David Kopriva, Andrea Lavoie, Anastasye Kisheev, Josef Buttigieg. 2014. Synchrotron mapping of the carotid artery plaque--A pilot study.  J Vasc. Surgery 60:5:1402.

    Braun D., I.D. Phillips and B. Wissel. 2014. Analysis of 13C in lake sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens) fin and muscle tissue: an application of three arithmetic lipid correction models. J. Appl. Ichtyol. 30: 1174-1180.

    Coomes, D., Flores, O., Holdaway, R., Jucker T., Lines, E.R., Vanderwel, M.C. 2014. Wood productivity response to climate change will depend critically on forest composition and structure. Global Change Biology 20: 3632-3645.

    Eme, J., Mueller, C.A., Manzon, R.G., Rogers, C.M., Boreham, D.R., Wilson, J.Y. 2014. Critical windows in embryonic development: Shifting incubation temperatures alter heart rate and oxygen consumption of Lake Whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis) embryos and hatchlings. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A. 179:71-81.

    Truax, B., Gagnon, D., Fortier, J. and Lambert, F. 2014.  Biomass and volume yield in mature hybrid poplar plantations on temperate abandoned farmland.  Forests 5:3107-3130 (doi: 10.3390/f5123107).

    C. S. Chan, X. Song, S. J. S. Qazi, D. Setiaputra, C. K. Yip, T.-C. Chao, and R. J. Turner, 2014. Unusual pairing between assistants: Interaction of the twin-arginine system-specific chaperone DmsD with the chaperonin GroEL. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun.

    N. Hansmeier, T.-C. Chao, J. B. Herbstman, L. R. Goldman, F. R. Witter, and R. U. Halden, 2014 Elucidating the Molecular Basis of Adverse Health Effects from Exposure to Anthropogenic Polyfluorinated Compounds Using Toxicoproteomic Approaches. J. Proteome Res.

    Clayden, M.G., K.A. Kidd, J. Chételat, Hall, B.D., and E. Garcia. 2014. Environmental, geographic and trophic influences on methylmercury concentrations in macroinvertebrates from lakes and wetlands across Canada. Ecotoxicology. 23:273-284. DOI 10.1007/s10646-013-1171-9.

    Smith, M.J., Palmer, P.I., Purves, D.W., Vanderwel, M.C., Lyutsarev, V., Calderhead, B., Joppa, L.N., Bishop, C.M., Emmott, S. 2014. Changing how Earth System Modelling is done to provide more useful information for decision making, science and society. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 95: 1453-1464.

    Seddon, A., Mackay, A., Baker, A., and 66 others. 2014.  Looking forward through the past. Identification of fifty priority research questions in palaeoecology. Journal of Ecology 102(1), 256–267.

    Moorhouse, H.L., S. McGowan, M.D. Jones, S.A. Brayshaw, P. Barker, E.Y. Haworth, and P.R. Leavitt.  2014. Contrasting effects of nutrients and climate on algal communities in lakes in the Windermere catchment since the late 19th century.  Freshwat. Biol. 59: 2605–2620.

    C. Kupitz, S. Basu, I. Grotjohann, R. Fromme, N. A. Zatsepin, K. N. Rendek, M. S. Hunter, R. L. Shoeman, T. A. White, D. Wang, D. James, J.-H. Yang, D. E. Cobb, B. Reeder, R. G. Sierra, H. Liu, A. Barty, A. L. Aquila, D. Deponte, R. A. Kirian, S. Bari, J. J. Bergkamp, K. R. Beyerlein, M. J. Bogan, C. Caleman, T.-C. Chao, C. E. Conrad, K. M. Davis, H. Fleckenstein, L. Galli, S. P. Hau-Riege, S. Kassemeyer, H. Laksmono, M. Liang, L. Lomb, S. Marchesini, A. V. Martin, M. Messerschmidt, D. Milathianaki, K. Nass, A. Ros, S. Roy-Chowdhury, K. Schmidt, M. Seibert, J. Steinbrener, F. Stellato, L. Yan, C. Yoon, T. A. Moore, A. L. Moore, Y. Pushkar, G. J. Williams, S. Boutet, R. B. Doak, U. Weierstall, M. Frank, H. N. Chapman, J. C. H. Spence, and P. Fromme, 2014. Serial time-resolved crystallography of photosystem II using a femtosecond X-ray laser. Nature, vol. 513, no. 7517, pp. 261–265

    S. Bhattacharya, T.-C. Chao, N. Ariyasinghe, Y. Ruiz, D. Lake, R. Ros, and A. Ros, 2014. Selective trapping of single mammalian breast cancer cells by insulator-based dielectrophoresis. Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, vol. 406, no. 7, pp. 1855–1865

    Perry, B.J., Yost, C.K. 2014. Construction of a mariner-based transposon vector for use in insertion sequence mutagenesis in selected members of the Rhizobiaceae. BMC Microbiology. 14:298.

    Curtis, C.J., Simpson, G.L., Battarbee, R.W., & Maberley S. 2014. Challenges in Defining Critical Loads for Nitrogen in UK Lakes. In Sutton, M.A., Mason, K.E., Sheppard, L.J., Sverdrup, H., Haeuber, R., & Hicks, W.K. (Eds) Nitrogen Deposition, Critical Loads and Biodiversity. Springer, Dordrecht.

    Anas M.U.M., K.A. Scott, and B. Wissel. 2014. Zooplankton communities are good indicators of potential impacts of Athabasca oil-sand operations on downwind boreal lakes. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 71: 719-732.

    Neudorf, K.D., Vanderlinde, E.M., Tambalo, D.D., Yost, C.K. 2014. A previously uncharacterized tetratricopeptide repeat containing protein is involved in cell envelope function in Rhizobium leguminosarum. Microbiology. [epub ahead of print] doi: 1099/mic.0.082420-0.

    Hall, B.D., J.L. Doucette, L.M. Bates, A. Bugajski, S. Niyogi, and Somers, C. 2014. Differential trends in mercury accumulation in Double Crested Cormorant populations of Canadian Prairie. Ecotoxicology. 23:419-428. DOI: 10.1007/s10646-014-1207-9.

    Clare, E.L., W.O. Symondson, H. Broders, F-H. Fabianek, E. Fraser, A. Mackenzie, A. Boughen, R. Hamilton, C. Willis, F. Martinez, A. Menzies, K. Norquay, M. Brigham, J. Poissant, J. Rintoul, R. Barclay and J. Reimer. 2014. The diet of Myotis lucifugus across Canada: assessing habitat quality and dietary variability. Molecular Ecology 23: 3618-3632.

    Mitz, C., Thome, C., Cybulskia, M., Laframboisea, L., Somers, C., Manzon, R.G., Wilson, J.W., Boreham, D.R. 2014. A self-contained, controlled hatchery system for rearing Lake Whitefish embryos for experimental aquaculture. North American Journal of Aquaculture. 76:179-184.

    Rabalais N.N., Cai W-J., Carstenses J., Conley D.J., Fry B., Hu Z., Quiñones-Rivera Z.J., Rosenberg R., Slomp C.J., Turner R.E., Voss M., B. Wissel, and Zhang J. 2014. Eutrophication-driven deoxygenation in the coastal ocean. Oceanography 27: 172-183.

    Starks E., R.N. Cooper, P.R. Leavitt and B. Wissel. 2014. Effects of drought and pluvial periods on fish and zooplankton communities in prairie lakes: deterministic vs. stochastic effects. Global Change Biol. 20: 1032-1042.

    Rahube, T.O., Viana, L.S., Koraimann, G., Yost, C.K. 2014. Characterization and comparative analysis of antibiotic resistance plasmids isolated from a wastewater treatment plant. Frontiers in Microbiology 5: 558.

    Manzon, L.A., Youson, J.H., Holzer, G., Staiano, L., Laudet, V., Manzon, R.G. 2014. Thyroid hormone and retinoid X receptor function and expression during sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) metamorphosis. General and Comparative Endocrinology 204:211-222.

    Tambalo, D.D., Vanderlinde, E.M., Robinson, S., Halmillawewa, A., Hynes, M.F., Yost, C.K. 2014.  Legume seed exudates and Physcomitrella patens extracts influence swarming behavior in Rhizobium leguminosarum. Canadian Journal of Microbiology 60: 15-24.

    Vanderlinde, E.M., Hynes, M.F. Yost, C.K. 2014. Homoserine catabolism by Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. viciae 3841 requires a plasmid-borne gene cluster that also affects competitiveness for nodulation. Environmental Microbiology 16(S1): 205-217.

    Heisler, L.M., C.M. Somers, T.I. Wellicome, and R.G. Poulin. 2014. Rodent populations on the northern Great Plains respond to weather variation at a landscape scale. Journal of Mammalogy 95: 82-90.

    Manzon, L.A., Youson, J.H., Holzer, G., Staiano, L., Laudet, V., Manzon, R. G. 2014. Thyroid hormone and retinoid X receptor function and expression during sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) metamorphosis. General and Comparative Endocrinology 204:211-222.

    Mitz, C., Thome, C., Cybulskia, M., Laframboisea, L., Somers, C., Manzon, R. G., Wilson, J.W., Boreham, D.R.  2014.  A self-contained, controlled hatchery system for rearing Lake Whitefish embryos for experimental aquaculture.  North American Journal of Aquaculture. 76:179-184.

    Rintoul, J.L.P. and R.M. Brigham. 2014. The influence of reproductive condition and concurrent environmental factors on torpor and foraging patterns in female Eptesicus fuscus. In press J. Comparative Physiol. B.

    Ludlow, S.M., R.M. Brigham and S.K. Davis. 2014. Breeding ecology of a grassland songbird community in south-east Alberta. In press. Wilson J. Ornithology.