Biological Sciences at Rensselaer

With excellent leadership, a strong and growing faculty, and modern facilities Biological Sciences at RPI is poised to tackle real-world molecular problems.

  • Our research areas are diverse, and play an integral role in our vision of the technological university.

  • Undergrads are matched with a Mount Sinai faculty mentor and gain hands-on experience in a biomedical research laboratory.

  • The lines dividing departments and curricula are blurred and intersecting.
  • When people from different disciplines put their heads together, it can result in enhanced discovery.


“A recent ASBMB Today article discussed the results of a collaboration between the labs of George Makhatadze of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Nadia Roan of the University of California, San Francisco. The paper, published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, discussed the ability of a small molecule gallic acid to reduce HIV infectivity associated with protein aggregates found in semen.

Dr. Jennifer Hurley, Assistant Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, has just received an award through an U01 cooperative agreement funded by the Department of Defense and the NIH National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering titled, “Multiscale Modeling of Circadian Rhythms”.  The total award is $3,932,000 with Dr. Hurley’s funding at $580,000.  The lead PI is Dr. William Cannon of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory with Drs.

Matt Schuler, post-doctoral research associate in the Rick Relyea Lab, recently published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences a study about how lizards might respond to a changing climate in different types of landscapes.

Dr. Lee Ligon, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences was recently elected Chair of the Public Information Committee of the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB ) for a three-year term from January 1, 2017 – December 31, 2020. The Public Information Committee oversees activities to foster education of public audiences in cell biology. Lee will work with the ASCB Communications and Education Director and the ASCB Science Writer. Congratulations Dr. Ligon.

Applications are now being accepted for a tenure-track Assistant Professor faculty position in areas of Cell Biology, Developmental Biology or Neurobiology.  The Department of Biological Sciences at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position at the rank of Assistant Professor. Applicants are expected to establish a vigorous and externally funded research program in any area of Cell Biology, Developmental Biology, or Neurobiology.  

Upcoming Events

Biological Sciences Seminar
Nov 7 at 12:00 pm
Biological Sciences Seminar
Nov 10 at 12:00 pm


To infect its victims, influenza A heads for the lungs, where it latches onto sialic acid on the surface of cells. So researchers created the perfect decoy: A carefully constructed spherical nanoparticle coated in sialic acid lures the influenza A virus to its doom. more

Biology, at the nitty-gritty level of motor proteins, DNA, and microtubules, takes its cue from physics. But while much is known about the biological components that form such cellular stuctures, researchers like Scott Forth are only beginning to explore the physical forces between those components. more

As signs of autumn such as falling leaves and cool weather days can be found across the Rensselaer campus, the university will be buzzing with activity as thousands of Rensselaer families are expected to visit Oct. 21-23 to celebrate Family Weekend. more

The bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa can thrive in environments as different as the moist, warm tissue in our lungs, and the dry, nutrient-deprived surface of an office wall. How does Pseudomonas survive in so many environments? more

A $1.8 million grant from the National Institutes of Health will support and expand the Biomolecular Sciences and Engineering Training Program at Rensselaer. more

Contact Information

Biological Sciences

1W14 Jonsson-Rowland Science Center
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
110 Eighth Street
Troy, NY 12180-3590