Faculty in the Department of Chemistry, Biology, and Health Sciences conduct basic and applied research in diverse areas of chemistry and biological sciences. Our research focuses on the areas of green chemistry, materials chemistry, biochemistry/molecular biology, and environmental biology. Faculty research projects are well funded by National Science Foundation, NASA, Department of Defense, National Institutes of Health, and other funding agencies. Participation in research is strongly encouraged at the undergraduate level. An independent publishable research project is expected for a research-based MS or PhD. Current research programs include:


  • Organic synthesis; medicinal chemistry; polymer chemistry (Filipova, Shchepin) 
  • Analytical and environmental chemistry (Heglund)
  • Inorganic chemistry; physical chemistry; electrochemical energy storage (Lipatov, Smirnova, Zhu) 
  • Materials chemistry; sustainable chemistry; nanochemistry; chemical and biological sensor (Christofferson, Lipatov, Smirnova, Zhu)
  • Biochemistry; nanotechnologies for drug delivery (Barth)

Biology / Pre-Professional Health Sciences

  • Sphingolipid metabolism & signaling; cancer/leukemia biology (Barth)
  • Microbial quorum sensing; biofilm (Dhiman)
  • Environmental planning and management (Gilcrease, Kunza)
  • Aquatic ecology (Kunza)
  • Extremophilic bioprocessing (Sani)
  • Epidemiology; public health; infectious disease (Mathews, Racz)