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Molecular & Medical Genetics


fly head

Visual circuit neurons in Drosophila.

As geneticists, the Stenesen Lab is interested in the encoding, processing and utilization of biological information. Beyond the molecular, our investigations extend into the nervous system with the goal of understanding how sensory information is transmitted to influence a behavioral response. To discover the basis of such events we employ genetic and cell biological approaches within the Drosophila model system.

Current Projects


neuronNociception is the sensory response to harmful stimuli. This process is commonly associated with the sense of pain, and is how body tissues are protected from damage. We utilize the nociceptive escape response of Drosophlia to monitor the impact of genetic and cellular alterations on circuit function.


You Can Do What with a (Spanish) Degree?

His first step was to enroll in physician’s assistant school at Baylor’s College of Medicine, a career trajectory to which he had aspired since his early childhood. Nowadays, Jonathan Cunningham, BA ’17, is dedicated to the vocational pursuit of comfort and healing at MD Anderson in Houston, among the largest cancer treatment centers in the U.S., where he was once a chemotherapy patient himself.

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History Alumnus Heads National Catholic Bioethics Center

During his Rome semester in 1991, Joseph Meaney, BA '93, with his friends (now Father) Kevin Cook, BA '94, and (now Texas State Representative and UD Trustee) Tan Parker, BA '93, attended a private Mass with Pope St. John Paul II. Several weeks earlier, they had hand-delivered a letter to the Swiss Guards outside St. Peter's requesting the Mass and including their contact information; at last, they'd received the phone call instructing them to be at the Bronze Gates at 5 a.m.

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