Jeffrey M. Duerr

Jeffrey M. Duerr, PhD

Professor of Biology


Office: EHS 211

My ideal community is one in which Jesus Christ is central and the life of the mind is both celebrated and nurtured. George Fox is just such a place, and I have grown spiritually and intellectually since joining the biology faculty in 1999.

It was Sir Thomas Browne who once remarked that "Nature is the art of God." To me, teaching and learning about the living creation is not only an act of admiration, but is a form of worship. My mission at George Fox is to share with students the power of the scientific method, one of the most successful means of acquiring knowledge of the created world, and the power of integrating scientific knowledge with the spiritual knowledge God has revealed in His written Word. I believe that a successful integration of science and faith affords an enriched appreciation of our Creator.

Academic Background

BA, Chemistry, Whitworth University (1989)
BS, Biology , Whitworth University (1989)
MS, Biology - Comparative Physiology, Portland State University (1991)
PhD, Zoology - Cell Physiology, University of Hawaii at Manoa (1997)

Expertise and Research Interests

My primary research interests focus on membrane transport proteins and cellular respiration. Most recently, I have focused on the physiology of the mitochondrion in two model systems: diapausing killifish embryos and the cultured prostate cancer cell line LNCaP.

The annual killifish Austrofundulus limnaeus provides an interesting system to study the physiology of a genetically programmed hypometabolic state (diapause). Current investigations are examining how mitochondrial respiration is altered during and following diapause, and the mechanisms controlling those changes. Applications of this research include improvements in organ preservation and inducing hypometabolic states in critical care patients. Much of my research in this area is in collaboration with a colleague at Portland State University.

The role of mitochondria in cancer is now well established. Mitochondria play a central function in cellular energy transformations, biosynthetic pathways, and programmed cell death (apoptosis). Presently, research is focused on elucidating the mechanism of angiotensin II on metabolic changes in prostate tumors. Angiotensin II can influence prostate cancer progression in different ways depending on which of two angiotensin II receptors are expressed and activated. A relatively new but ongoing project in my lab is probing the effects of angiotensin II on respiratory control of mitochondria in cultured LNCaP cells.

Select Research Bibliography

Publications and Presentations

Primary Teaching Responsibilities

BIOL 212 - General Biology II
BIOL 367 - Essentials of Microbiology
BIOL 420 - Cell Biology
BIOL 450 - Advanced Human Anatomy

Outside the Classroom

I live in Newberg with my wife and three daughters, all of whom keep me very busy as we explore the beauty of the state of Oregon. We love to camp from the high desert to the beaches, enjoy biking through Champoeg State Park, and visiting family in central Oregon.

I particularly enjoy combining both the left and right sides of my brain in culinary pursuits, both in the kitchen and the grill during the summer months. I am passionate about reading and music. I am a great fan of classic literature, Christian apologetics and theology (C.S. Lewis and Dietrich Bonhoeffer come to mind), classical music and jazz.