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I. Epithelial cells are the body's first line of defense against environmental pollutants. They have fluid membranes with subdomains that somehow retain specific functions (apical vs basolateral domains). Some have projections that move fluid across the cells surface (lung cilia, intestinal microvilli) or allow detection of sound (stereocilia of ears). How do epithelial cells do it? How do they provide the body protection from compounds like ozone? How do they organize projections to generate force? These are the questions we study.

Research Topics

Environmental Cell Biology: Investigating the effects of ozone on lung alveolar cells
An Introduction to Epithelial Cells (compiled by Fall 2010 Group Investigation in Epithelial Cell Biology Students)

Biophysics: Characterizing flagella force generation via laser trapping

II. The tools of the molecular biologist and ecology come together in a collaboration between the Bernd lab and Dr. Dorcas' Herpetology lab. Following the tracks of a killer: Has Chytrid fungus reached the amphibian population of NC?

Environmental Cell Biology: Characterizing the presence/absence of Bd fungus among 6 populations of salamanders in the Western Piedmont


General Resources

American Society for Cell Biology

Chlamydomonas Genetics Center

National Conferences on Undergraduate Research (NCUR)

PubMed (Medline)

Web of Science (login required)

Bernd Lab

© Copyright 2009 Department of Biology, Davidson College, Davidson, NC 28036. Email comments, questions, and suggestions to Dr. Bernd