Karla Marz ’13

Faculty and Student

Assistant Professor in Biology

My research examines some of the molecular underpinnings of circadian clocks. These clocks regulate an enormous number of biological functions that occur on an approximately 24-hour, or circadian, cycle. Circadian cycles of gene expression and other cell activities influence phenomena as diverse as the sleep/wake cycle, the ability to concentrate and remember, efficacy and toxicity of cancer treatments, predator/prey interactions, and the navigation of monarch butterflies as they migrate between northern North America and Mexico.

At their base, circadian rhythms are controlled by a clock mechanism contained within cells, a complex set of transcription/translation feedback loops regulated both post-transcriptionally and post-translationally. In mammals, two proteins called Cryptochromes, or CRYs, play multiple critical roles. Students and I in my laboratory are attempting to 1) tease apart the CRYs' roles by defining and examining the importance of specific interactions between CRYs and other proteins, and 2) uncover how CRY gene expression is regulated in different tissues.


B.A. Chemistry and Cellular/Molecular Neuroscience, Macalester College; Ph.D. Biochemistry, Washington University in St. Louis

Courses Taught

Synonym Title Times Taught Terms Taught
BIO-201Cell and Molecular Biology102014/FA, 2013/FA, 2012/FA, 2011/FA, 2010/FA, 2009/FA, and 2008/FA
BIO-201Cell Biology Lab82014/FA, 2013/FA, 2012/FA, 2011/FA, 2010/FA, 2009/FA, and 2008/FA
BIO-373Cell Biology Lab62015/SP, 2014/SP, 2013/SP, 2012/SP, 2011/SP, and 2010/SP
BIO-100Biology Explorations Circ Lab62015/SP, 2014/SP, 2010/SP, and 2009/SP
BIO-373Cell Biology62015/SP, 2014/SP, 2013/SP, 2012/SP, 2011/SP, and 2010/SP
BIO-101Principles Lab52014/FA, 2010/FA, 2009/FA, and 2008/FA
BIO-100Bio Explorations: Circ Clocks42015/SP, 2014/SP, 2010/SP, and 2009/SP
CHE-255Biochemistry Lab42013/SP, 2011/SP, and 2009/SP
FTS-100First Term Seminar22012/FA and 2011/FA
BIO-392Biology Research22012/SP and 2011/SP
BIO-128Biomolecular Research22012/JN and 2010/JN
BIO-344Special Topic: Topics/Cell Biology12009/SP