Department Facilities

The department's state-of-the-art equipment in the Frey Science and Engineering Center enhance field and laboratory research opportunities as well as the laboratory portions of our courses.  Housed in Owens Science Hall, our facilities include eight teaching labs, twelve research labs, a greenhouse, a darkroom, and multi-purpose classrooms.

Intro Labs

OWS 264 - Introductory Biology Majors Teaching Lab

Room 264 Owens is used exclusively for introductory courses for biology/biochemistry majors. Diversity and Adaptation labs (BIOL 201) meet in this room during Fall Semester. Students in this course have the opportunity to use the Qubit gas exchange monitors to measure metabolic rate of invertbrates and photosynthesis. They also use digital microscopes to enhance their study of diversity. Both the Qubit systems and the digital microscopes were purchased through an NSF grant. 

Spring semester finds many of the same students back in this lab for the second course in the biology core: Genetics, Evolution, and Ecology (BIOL 202). 

OWS 266 - Non-science Majors Teaching Lab

Biology labs for non-science majors meet in 266 Owens. A basic biology lab, this room is furnished with standard standard equipment such as an incubator, water baths, microscopes, etc.

Human Biology (BIOL 105) and Women, Medicine, and Biology (BIOL 106) laboratory sections convene here during Fall Semester. Spring semester this room is occupied by labs of General Biology (BIOL 101) and Conservation Biology (BIOL 102). 

OWS 378 - Introductory Biology Teaching Lab

Room 378 serves two purposes. During the Fall semester, it houses the multiple lab sections of Cellular Energetics (BIOL 208, the second core course in our curriculum) and during the Spring, the labs for Biology of Sustainability (BIOL 209) meet here.

With room for a maximum of 24 students, this lab is a fully equipped cell biology lab with both tissue culture and bio-safety hoods, phase contrast microscopes, an inverted microscope, incubators for cell culture, spectrophotometers, and micro-plate readers. 

Cellular / Molecular Labs

OWS 254 - Microbial Physiology Research Lab

Room 254 Owens is Dr. Jayna Ditty's research lab. A fully equipped microbiology lab, it also contains specialized equipment to measure circadian rhythms in cyanobacteria. Here you see one of Dr. Ditty's research students pouring media into petri plates. 

OWS 263 - Genetics/Microbiology Teaching lab

During Fall semester, Genetics (BIOL 360) meets in room 263. Genetic investigations of fruit flies and other organisms are made possible by the microscopes, centrifuges, and thermocycler for doing PCR replication of genomes. 

Microbiology (BIOL 356) also uses this room during Spring semester. A full media preparation room, complete with autoclave, adjoins this laboratory.

OWS 355 - Immunology Research Lab

Research in immunology at UST occurs in Dr. Jill Manske's lab (355 Owens). It contains all the basic equipment to investigate cell biology questions and is adjacent to the advanced Cell and Molecular Biology teaching lab (389 Owens). It also houses a Fluorescence Activated Cell Sorter (FACS) purchased with funds from and NSF grant. The FACS is unique among the private colleges in the Twin City area. 

OWS 360 - Cell Biology Research lab

Here you see a part of Dr. Jennifer Cruise's cell biology research lab. Her interest in cell proliferation requires cell culture equipment such as a sterile hood and incubator not shown in this view.

OWS 362 - Plant Physiology Research lab

The large poster of a plant in the center of this image might give a clue that this is the plant physiology research lab (362 Owens). Lead by Dr. Amy Verhoeven, students in this lab use a variety of techniques and equipment such as HPLC (high performance liquid chromatography) to study how plants adapt to stressful environments.

OWS 376 - Developmental Biology Research lab

Research in Dr. Glenn Sherer's lab (376 Owens) focuses on vascular development in chicks and quail. Among the equipment used in this lab are several types of microscopes, incubators, and slide preparation equipment.

OWS 379 - Teaching lab for Microscopic Anatomy, Developmental Biology, and Plant Physiology

This room is the teaching laboratory for Microscopic Anatomy (BIOL 353)and Developmental Biology (BIOL 365). This lab is well-equipped with a full array of microscopes, a projection system, an automated tissue preparation system for preparing microscope slides, as well as the usual hoods and incubators for cell/tissue culture.

This teaching lab also houses Plant Physiology.  Students in Plant Phys use Qubit gas exhange monitors to make precise measurements of plant metabolism. Their study of microscopic structures and adapations of plants are enhanced by use of digital microscopes.

OWS 389 - Cell Biology/Immunology Teaching lab

Room 389 is our upper division lab for cellular and molecular biology courses. It houses Cell Biology (BIOL 371) in the Fall, and Immunology and Molecular Biology (BIOL 462) in the Spring. With enough bench space for 16 students, this lab is exceptionally well-equipped for an undergraduate institution. It has numerous laminar flow hoods, a bio-safety hood, phase constrast microscopes, cell culture incubators, refrigerator, freezer, plus the standard lab equipment and supplies. 

Organismal Biology Labs

OWS 253 - Aquatic Toxicology Research lab

In room 253, Dr. Martinovic-Welgelt and her students investigate the effects of pollutants on organisms.  Dr. Martinovic-Welgelt's expertise is in endocrine disruptors.  Here she is assisting students to analyze data from the real time PCR, which allows researchers to quantify the amount of a specific kind of mRNA in tissues.  From that information, you can determine if a particular gene has been turned on or not.

OWS 267A - Behavioral Ecology Research lab

A pair of Dr. Adam Kay's research students are analyzing data in his research lab in 267A Owens. Dr. Kay's research focuses on evolutionary ecology, specifically investigating links between an organism's physiology, behavior, and role in an ecosystem.

OWS 362 - Plant Physiology Research lab

The large poster of a plant in the center of this image might give a clue that this is the plant physiology research lab (362 Owens). Lead by Dr. Amy Verhoeven, students in this lab use a variety of techniques and equipment such as HPLC (high performance liquid chromatography) to study how plants adapt to stressful environments.

OWS 376 - Developmental Biology Research lab

Research in Dr. Glenn Sherer's lab (376 Owens) focuses on vascular development in chicks and quail. Among the equipment used in this lab are several types of microscopes, incubators, and slide preparation equipment.

OWS 380 - Comparative Anatomy Teaching lab

The two Comparative Anatomy and Physiology labs (for BIOL 349 in the Fall and BIOL 350 during Spring semesters) meet in room 380. In addition to the standard lab equipment, this lab has 4 sets of physiological recording equipment. This equipment can collect basic physiological data such as heart rate, ECGs, and EMGs. Combined with a treadmill, stationary bicycle, and free weights, students can design a variety of interesting physiological experiments. The moveable tables make this a very versatile lab.

The room is also fully supplied with comparative anatomy specimens.

OWS 381 - Neuroscience Teaching lab

In this lab, students do hands-on investigations in neuroscience.  Here you see students measuring action potentials along crayfish axons.

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Labs

OWS 267A

A pair of Dr. Adam Kay's research students are analyzing data in his research lab in 267A Owens. Dr. Kay's research focuses on evolutionary ecology, specifically investigating links between an organism's physiology, behavior, and role in an ecosystem.

OWS 267B - Aquatic Ecology Research lab

Dr. Kyle Zimmer's research lab is located in room 267B, adjacent to Dr. Kay's lab. Dr. Zimmer's research on ecology of lakes and food web interactions requires heavy use of microscopes for identification, and, of course, computers for analysis.

OWS 268 - Ecology Teaching Lab

Ecology (BIOL 330) and Animal Behavior (BIOL 330) labs can be found in Owens 268 during Fall Semester. Aquatic Biology (BIOL 435) also uses this room as it's laboratory base during Spring Semster.

Owens 268 adjoins the research labs of Dr. Kyle Zimmer, our aquatic ecologist, and Dr. Adam Kay, our animal behaviorist.

OWS 370 - Plant Ecology & Evolution Research lab

Boxes of envelopes containing seeds from research plants await Dr. Simon Emms and his students in 370 Owens. Dr. Emms' research focuses on how reproductive strategies of flowering plants have been shaped by ecological and evolutionary factors.

Greenhouse

Greenhouse East Research Room

This climate and light controlled room is used exclusively for botanical research.  The flowering plants you see here are subjects in Dr. Simon Emms and Dr. Amy Verhoeven's NSF funded research on the the joint evolution of mating systems, life-history strategies, and drought physiology in the Californian genus Clarkia.

Greenhouse Lab

Although small, this lab provides important space for setting up experiments and taking measurements.  It is fully equipped with glassware, a sink, and microscopes.  Here you see General Biology students planting Wisconsin Fast Plants at the beginning of a 4-week experiment.

Greenhouse West Collections Room

This view shows only a small amount of the variety of plants living in the collection room.  The room houses a number of tropical and sub-tropical tree species, a large hanging staghorn fern, and numerous species of succulents, orchids, and bromeliads.  Examples such as these allow students to study examples of plant adaptations to their environments and evolutionary connections between groups.  Plant labels and interpretive posters help tell the stories.

The greenhouse manager, Steve Trost, controls pests using a variety of beneficial insects.  Look for posters for more information, or ask Steve about his program.

With a small table and chairs, this room can be a quiet haven of green for winter-weary Minnesotans.