Welcome to the Biology Department

The UCCS Department of Biology helps create critical thinkers and the next generation of scientists

Our mission is to provide excellent classroom teaching integrated with relevant research and practical experiences that will prepare students to be innovative and knowledgeable professionals in the biological sciences, as well as critical thinkers and engaged citizens.

We offer a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) and a Master of Sciences (M.Sc.) degree. In conjunction with the College of Education, students can specialize in K-12 biology education.

Our undergraduate curriculum was designed to provide students with a foundation in the biological sciences, as well as to foster an appreciation for the diversity of living organisms and the processes that sustain them.

Important announcement for all Biology Students


Our News & Announcements

Dr. Jeremy Bono awarded NIH grant
Dr. Jeremy Bono and his collaborator Luciano Matzkin from the University of Arizona have been awarded an R21 grant from the NIH titled, "Investigating a novel role of RNA in fertility."
Dr. Olesnicky Killian receives NIH grant
Dr. Olesnicky Killian received a R15 grant from the NIH to so study the role of the gene caper in regulating development and maintenance of the nervous system.
Dr. Killian and MSc. student Ethan Wright publish paper
"Drosophila as a Model for Assessing the Function of RNA-Binding Proteins during Neurogenesis and Neurological Disease". Read More
Dr. Olesnicky Killian, UCCS students, and collaborators publish research paper.


Dr. Mooney co-authors paper
Dr. Mooney and undergraduate Biology student Brittany Smith publish paper with Dr. Janel Owens and Luis Lowe of the Chemistry and Biochemistry department. The paper is published in the Journal of Applied Research on Medicinal and Aromatic Plants and is titled "Chemotypic variation in osha (Ligusticum porteri) in Colorado, USA".
Dr. Klocko co-authors paper
"Variation in mutation spectra among CRISPR/Cas9 mutagenized poplars" by Estefania Elorriaga, Amy Leigh Klocko, Cathleen Ma, Steven Henry Strauss, published in Frontiers in Plant Science, section Plant Biotechnology. To view the online publication, please click here
Dr. Lybecker receives NIH Grant
Dr. Lybecker and her colleagues at the University of Montana have received an RO1 grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases of the National Institutes of Health for their work in understanding the regulatory mechanisms that allow Borrelia burgdorferi to respond and adapt to varied carbon sources in Lyme disease pathogenesis.
Dr. Klocko co-authors paper
Host‐induced gene silencing (HIGS) is an approach that shows promise for the control of a variety of problematic crop‐damaging organisms, ranging from nematodes and insects, to fungi and parasitic plants. Host‐Induced Gene Silencing for Pest/Pathogen Control. 2018 January. doi: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0023726
Biology faculty earns Quality Matters certification
Eugenia Olesnicky Killian, assistant professor, Biology Department, recently completed the Quality Matters certification for her course BIOL 1350: General Biology II Introduction to the Cell. She certified the lecture component of an integrated lecture/laboratory course that introduces concepts of structure and functional relationships among biological molecules, cellular metabolism, genetics and molecular biology. Read More
Dr. Bono is a co-investigator on a Major Research Instrumentation grant.
Drs. Guy Hagen, Jeremy Bono, Kathrin Spendier, Kevin Tvrdy, and Zbigniew Celinski receive funding from the NSF for the 'Acquisition of a fluorescence microscope for manipulating and imaging live cells'.
Dr. Pigage co-authors paper
Pigage, H.K., J.C. Pigage and J.R. Demboski.   Survey of Siphonaptera from western North American chipmunk. Comparative Parasitology (in press).
Dr. Hines is a co-investigator on 5 year NSF grant.
Drs. Patrick McGuire, Robert Block, Lisa Hines and Tom Christensen receive funding from the NSF for a project entitled ‘Supporting Noyce Scholars Through Professional Learning Communities.'
Dr. Subudhi co-authors paper
Song A, Zhang Y, Han L, Yegutkin GG, Liu H, Sun K, D'Alessandro A, Li J, Karmouty-Quintana H, Iriyama T, Weng T, Zhao S, Wang W, Wu H, Nemkov T, Subudhi AW, Jameson-Van Houten S, Julian CG, Lovering AT, Hansen KC, Zhang H, Bogdanov M, Dowhan W, Jin J, Kellems RE, Eltzschig HK, Blackburn M, Roach RC, Xia Y.   Erythrocytes retain hypoxic adenosine response for faster acclimatization upon re-ascent. Nat Commun. 2017 Feb 7;8:14108. doi: 10.1038/ncomms14108.
Dr. Mooney receives 3 year NSF grant.
Dr. Mooney receives funding from the NSF Division of Environmental Biology Population and Community Ecology Cluster to study ‘Climate-induced changes in phenology as direct and indirect drivers of herbivore abundance.'
Dr. Lybecker publishes paper
News & Announcements
Opportunities for Students

USAFA Life Sciences Research Technician
NBAT Technical Monitoring Liaison
MS or PhD Assistantship in Bat Genetics and Wildlife Ecology

Biology Graduate Student Earns Research Award

Environmental and Exercise Physiology section of the American Physiological Society (APS) awards 2019 Partnership for Clean Competition Predoctoral Research Award to Faith Pizzey: http://www.the-aps.org/mm/awards/sections/eep. The award recognizes the research Faith submitted to be presented at the 2019 Experimental Biology conference in Orlando.

ScribeAmerica Job Opportunities for Students

ScribeAmerica, a company that hires and trains medical scribes for physicians in a variety of specialties, is currently hiring. The role of a scribe is to make providers more efficient by taking over the role of documentation, allowing the provider to work more effectively with patients. The position gives scribes the amazing opportunity to actively observe a variety of patients and receive personal mentorship from providers in a clinical setting. Read More

Dr. Olesnicky Killian's work in the news

The research of UCCS professor Dr. Eugenia Olesnicky Killian, undergraduate Brandon Titus, and Colorado College professor Dr. Darrell Killian was highlighted in the Colorado Springs Gazette Dec 18, 2018. Read More

The Department of Biology’s Museum of Natural History

The museum includes an extensive mammal collection comprised of study skins, skeletal material, and taxidermy mounts. These materials were collected primarily by the late Dr. Jon Pigage, and have been used extensively in teaching and research.
Read More

Dr Pigage

In Memory: Jon Pigage

It is with great sadness that I share the loss of a longtime member of our campus community. Jon C. Pigage, associate professor and associate chair, Biology Department, died early February 7, 2018 following a battle with cancer. Read More

New Applications for Internships, Research and Study Abroad Opportunities

For study abroad and summer research opportunity announcements as well as internships, we list these opportunities as we become aware of them. Internships are offered by an employer (company or organization) to students to work for a fixed time, usually one semester. Because they are positions that are off campus, the Biology Department uses the term Externships. Students may receive credit by enrolling in Externship in Biology, Biol 4710/5710

Students with Work-study

If you have Work-study and are interested in working in the Biology Department, contact Brent Wallace (255-3206).

Andrew Baran

Andrew Baran was invited to present his graduate work, supervised by Drs. Jon Pigage, Jeff Broker, Emily Mooney, and Andrew Ketsdever, at the 99th annual meeting of the American Society of Mammalogists, held June 25-29, 2018 at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas. The title of his presentation was “Bone Strength of the Metacarpal in Pronghorn (Antilocapra americana)"

Claire Trotter, MSc student in Biology

Claire Trotter finished 2nd in the inaugural Mountain Lion Grad Slam 3-minute talk competition sponsored by the UCCS Graduate School. To listen to Claire’s presentation, Watch Video

Undergraduate student Katie Collier

Katie Collier will be interning this summer with the Belize Raptor Center, working with public outreach, training, and veterinary care. Read More

Brews and Biotech Happy Hour

The CU Denver Anschutz Medical Campus formed the Academia Industry Alliance in 2015. They sponsor a Happy Hour every third Thursday of the month from 5-730pm at Ursula Brewery, adjacent to Anschutz Medical Campus, as a networking opportunity for academics and representatives from life science companies. AIA members are interested in learning more about how to transition to the industry, how to create a company, and how to succeed in the biotech/life sciences sphere. For more information about AIA, check Read More