Debra Martin Ph.D.

Debra Martin, Ph.D.


Aquinas Hall, AH 324    |    Campus Box: # 10
(507) 457-1628   |

  • Areas of Expertise

    Molecular Biology, Research

  • Professional Organizations

    - Minnesota Academy of Science : Chairman, Planning Committee
    - American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology : Moderator / Planner
    - Southeast Minnesota, Western Wisconsin Regional Science and Engineering fair : Co-Chairman and Treasurer
    - American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology : Accreditation Steering Group

  • Education

    - Upper Iowa University: B.S., Biology (1978)
    - University of Iowa University of Iowa: Ph.D., Molecular Biology and Biochemistry (1990)

  • Experience
    Media Appearances

    Saint Mary’s accepting applications for Advancing Regenerative Medicine Workshop
    Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota News | online
    Mar. 20, 2017

    Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota is inviting current sophomore and junior undergraduate students from throughout the three-state region who are majoring in the sciences to apply for a two-week workshop on Advancing Regenerative Medicine. The workshop will be held May 29-June 9, 2017 at Saint Mary’s Winona Campus. Students selected to take part in this state-of-the-art educational experience—focused on advancing clinically relevant scientific discovery in regenerative medicine and tissue engineering—will receive $1,000 and obtain complimentary room and board for the two-week workshop.

    Making a difference at Mayo
    Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota News | online
    Jan. 6, 2017

    Dr. Debra Martin, biology professor, said that each year she takes her Molecular Biology Class to tour the PGL and the Cytogenetic, FISH, and Microarray laboratories at Mayo Clinic. “I am fortunate that Mayo Clinic provides this opportunity for our students to see molecular biology in action at a world renowned, innovative research facility that is so close to our campus. It is also a time that I can introduce our current science students to the alumni who work in these labs. I am amazed at the percentage of employees in these labs who are Saint Mary’s alumni!”


    The Expression of Glutathione S-transferase Isotypes (Alpha, Mu and Pi) in Mice (Mus Musculus) Chronically Exposed to Atrazine
    ASBMB/EB Annual Meeting Apr. 21, 2018 | San Diego, CA

    Glutathione S-transferase Expression in Fetal Liver Of Gallus Gallus Exposed to Atrazine in Ovo”
    The Minnesota Academy of Science and βββ District Meeting Apr. 21, 2018 | St. Thomas University, St. Paul, MN.

    Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor-beta, Neuropilin-1, and Fatty Acid Binding Protein 4 Expression in Mice (Mus Musculus) Muscle Tissue Exposed in Utero to Atrazine”
    The Minnesota Academy of Science and βββ District Meeting Apr. 21, 2018 | St. Thomas University, St. Paul, MN.

    Expression of Proteins Tnf-α and Vegf-α Post Chronic Exposure to Triazine Herbicide, Atrazine”
    Winona Health Research Fair Apr. 20, 2018 | Winona, MN.

    Effects of Atrazine on the Growth, Development and Gender Determination in Mus Musculus
    Winona Health Research Fair Apr. 20, 2018 | Winona, MN.

    Recent Articles:

    A National Comparison of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Capstone Experiences Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education
    Ann Aguanno, Pamela Mertz, Debra Martin, Ellis Bell

    Recognizing the increasingly integrative nature of the molecular life sciences, the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) recommends that Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (BMB) programs develop curricula based on concepts, content, topics, and expected student outcomes, rather than courses. To that end, ASBMB conducted a series of regional workshops to build a BMB Concept Inventory containing validated assessment tools, based on foundational and discipline-specific knowledge and essential skills, for the community to use. A culminating activity, which integrates the educational experience, is often part of undergraduate molecular life science programs. These "capstone" experiences are commonly defined as an attempt to measure student ability to synthesize and integrate acquired knowledge. However, the format, implementation, and approach to outcome assessment of these experiences are quite varied across the nation. Here we report the results of a nation-wide survey on BMB capstone experiences and discuss this in the context of published reports about capstones and the findings of the workshops driving the development of the BMB Concept Inventory. Both the survey results and the published reports reveal that, although capstone practices do vary, certain formats for the experience are used more frequently and similarities in learning objectives were identified. The use of rubrics to measure student learning is also regularly reported, but details about these assessment instruments are sparse in the literature and were not a focus of our survey. Finally, we outline commonalities in the current practice of capstones and suggest the next steps needed to elucidate best practices.

    Anxiolytic and anti-depressant effects of Boswellia extract on CD1
    Mus musculus. Bios.
    Danielle M. Strebel, Andrew J. Fangel, Tony M. Wolfe, Emily J. Mason

    Frankincense is obtained from the trees of the genus Boswellia and has been used historically for many reasons, including medicinal purposes. Previous research indicates that mice treated with a purified component from frankincense, incensole acetate (IA), had a decrease in anxious behavior during anxiety tests. Boswellia extract can be purchased from General Nutrition Centers (GNC). Since IA has been found to be have antidepressant properties in mice, this study investigated whether the Boswellia extract from GNC, e.g. unpurified IA, would also have anti-depressant/anti-anxiety affect. Sixty CD1 mice, 30 male and 30 female, were treated for approximately 25 days and were tested for the anti-depressant and anti-anxiety effects of Boswellia extract and sertraline (Zoloft®) compared to the control group. Each group of mice was analyzed by three behavioral tests: an open-field test, tail suspension test, and marble-burying test to determine the effects of these drugs. It was found that female mice treated with sertraline demonstrated significant reduction of anxiety behaviors as measured in the open field test, indicating reduced anxiety. Treatment with Boswellia, on the other hand, did not show a significant reduction in anxiety behaviors in either gender of mice. The tail suspension results showed that both Boswellia and sertraline significantly increased immobility time. These results suggest the Boswellia and sertraline reduce anxiety, but not depression in CD1 mice.

  • Links

    Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota Biology Department