Sensory Biology and Behavior (SBB) Research Group

This graduate training group focuses on research at the intersection of neurobiology, behavior, and evolution directed at how organisms sense and respond to their environment at functional and evolutionary levels. Research includes mechanisms of sensory system function, neuroethology, behavioral ecology, sexual selection, sensory ecology, genomics and evolutionary developmental biology of sensory traits and response systems. Research at the intersection of these disciplines is making significant contributions to many other areas, including human behavior and medicine, molecular genetics, physiology and endocrinology, ecology and evolutionary biology. Faculty in this group form interdisciplinary collaborations within the department and with faculty in the UC College of Medicine, Environmental Health, and Engineering, Children's Hospital Research Center, and Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden.

Graduate Advisors for MS Thesis and PhD Program

* Indicates lab is accepting graduate applications for the upcoming Fall Semester

Josh Benoit

Joshua Benoit*
Lab Website

Email Address:
Research interestInsect stress tolerance, hormonal regulation of metabolism, reproductive physiology
The Benoit lab studies the mechanisms underlying insect stress tolerance and dormancy, reproductive physiology, and regulation of metabolism; with a slant towards medically-important arthropods.

Prof. Buchholz in his office

Daniel Buchholz *
Email address:
Research interest:
Evolution and development; hormonal control of development
The Buchholz lab studies the role of hormones in development and evolution. In particular the lab examines frog metamorphosis through comparative endocrinology

Prof. Buschbeck in her lab

Elke Buschbeck*
Lab Website

Email address:
Research interest: Neuroethology: function and evolution of insect visual systems
The Buschbeck lab studies the function, development and evolution of invertebrate eyes.

Prof. Griff standing on the Zimmer Rooftop near the trees

Edwin Griff
Email address:
Research interest: Neurophysiology of vertebrate sensory systems; olfaction, biology education

Prof. Gross in his lab

Joshua Gross*
Lab Website
Email address:
Research interest: Molecular and genetic bases for cave adaptation; evolution and development
The Gross lab studies the genetic and developmental mechanisms that underlie morphological, sensory, physiological and behavioral evolution. We utilize a model system called the blind Mexican cavefish.

Prof. Guerra outside working with Monarch Butterflies

Patrick Guerra*
Lab Website
Email address:
Research interest: Sensory ecology; orientation and navigation mechanisms; animal architecture
The Guerra lab studies how animals use sensory cues from their environment to move in time and space. Behavioral, physiological, and genetic approaches are used to understand the mechanisms and evolution of animal movement.

Prof. Hobson

Elizabeth Hobson*
Lab Website
Email address:
Research interest: Ecology and evolution of social complexity; cognitive ecology; social structure
The Hobson lab research focuses on social information: what animals know about their social worlds, how they come to know it, and what they do with that information.

Prof. Jayne running a snake through an experiment

Bruce Jayne*
Lab Website
Email address:
Research interest: Neural control of movement and behavior of ectothermic vertebrates.
The Jayne lab uses comparative studies to determine the relative importance of variation in anatomy, behavior and environmental factors for affecting whole-animal function.

Noelia Lander

Noelia Lander*
Email address:
Research interest: Molecular Parasitology, trypanosomes, cell signaling, host-parasite interaction, genome editing, CRISPR/Cas9.
Integrating cellular, biochemical and genetic approaches the Lander lab studies the signaling pathways by which Trypanosoma cruzi—the etiological agent of Chagas disease—senses microenvironmental changes and triggers specific cellular responses that lead to differentiation among the main stages of the parasite's life cycle.

Prof. Layne in his lab with equipment

John Layne*
Email address:
Research interest: Neuroethology; mechanisms of animal navigation
The Layne lab aims to discover how sense organs, and the neural processing of sensory information, mediate and constrain animal behavior.

Undregraduate studies photos for Rebecca Farabaugh, Sennott Square and Crawford Hall, June, 24, 2015, 210185

Nathan Morehouse*
Lab Website
Email address:
Research interests: Visual and behavioral ecology, coevolutionary dynamics of reproductive traits
The Morehouse Lab studies the visual ecology and reproductive biology of insects and spiders. Research themes include the evolution of visual functions like color vision and gaze control, and more.

Prof. Polak

Michal Polak*
Lab Website
Email address:
Research interest: Evolution of insect reproductive traits; sexual selection
The Polak lab addresses fundamental questions in evolutionary biology. The research pursued encompasses sexual selection, nutritional ecology, and host-parasite interactions.

Prof. Rollmann in the desert with cactus

Stephanie Rollmann*
Lab Website
Email address:
Research interest: Genetics and neurobiology of behavior, olfaction; chemical ecology
The Rollmann lab takes a multi-dimensional approach to understanding the genetic and neural underpinnings of chemical communication and behavior by combining behavioral, molecular genetic and neurophysiological approaches.

George Uetz holding up a canister with a spider in it

George Uetz
Email address:
Research interest: Animal communication, sensory ecology and sexual selection; arachnology
The Uetz lab works on the sensory ecology of multimodal communication (visual and vibratory) and its role in sexual selection and species recognition in spiders.

Prof. Vanderelst in front of machinery

Dieter Vanderelst*
Lab Website
Research interestModels of bat echolocation and flight control, robotic and computational models
The Vanderelst lab models echolocation based navigation, flight control and foraging in bats. The lab uses simulation methods, artificial sonar systems, and robots to study the sensorimotor loops underlying bat biosonar.