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Faculty Profile

Tiffany Frey

(she/her/hers)Associate Professor of Biology (2011)

Contact Information

James Hall - Rector Complex Room 2221


I have been studying inflammation since 2003 when I started my dissertation research at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in the Department of Pediatric Surgery. I have studied inflammation in various settings over the years including sepsis, lung infection, diabetes, and autoinflammatory diseases. My primary interest is how products of the cholesterol biosynthetic pathway affect the response of monocytes and macrophages to the inflammatory stimulus lipopolysaccharide (LPS), which is a component of Gram-negative bacteria such as Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli. I am currently focused on how the depletion of non-sterol isoprenoids produced by the cholesterol biosynthetic pathway causes the inflammatory symptoms (such as fever, rash, and joint pain) associated with the rare autoinflammatory disease mevalonate kinase deficiency (MKD). We model this disease in mouse and human cells by blocking the cholesterol pathway with various drugs followed by stimulation with LPS. A number of inflammatory phenotypes are altered when we block the cholesterol pathway including the expression of inflammatory genes (cytokine mRNAs and miRNAs that regulate inflammatory pathways), trafficking and release of acute phase proteins such as CD14, and levels of extracellular vesicles. Our goal is to understand the causes of these alterations, which will lead to a deeper understanding of inflammation in various disease settings.


  • B.S., The Pennsylvania State University, 2000
  • Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 2008

2023-2024 Academic Year

Fall 2023

BIOL 216 Genetics w/Lab
A study of Mendelian genetics, linkage, and mutation. An introduction to basic DNA structure and function including replication, transcription, and translation. Laboratory exercises involve both classic and molecular approaches to genetic analysis utilizing prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms. Six hours classroom a week. Prerequisites: 131 & 132. For Neuroscience majors only, prerequisite is 132 and PSYC 125.

BIOL 550 Independent Research

BIOL 560 Stu/Faculty Collaborative Rsch

Spring 2024

BIOL 301 Human Anatomy w/Lab
Comprehensive examination of the gross structure, organization, and function of the human body with an emphasis on clinical case studies. The laboratory includes regional examination of human gross anatomy, histology, and dissection of select organs. Six hours classroom a week. Prerequisites: One 200-level BIOL course.

BIOL 433 Molecular Pathophys w/Lab
Human diseases often result from disordered physiology (pathophysiology) and therefore the abilities to understand disease and design specific and effective treatments are dependent on understanding normal physiological processes and the ways in which these can become disordered. This course will review the normal structure and function of select systems in the human body and subsequently examine the cellular, molecular, and systemic pathophysiological mechanisms that underlie common diseases related to that system with an emphasis on critical analysis of current biomedical literature. The laboratory portion of the course will involve original research projects using cell culture and animal models of human disease. Six hours of classroom/laboratory a week. Prerequisites: at least one upper-level physiology or cellular & molecular biology course: 216, 313, 318, 326, 327, 330 ,333, 334, 335, 342, 380 or permission of instructor.

BCMB 560 Stu/Faculty Collaborative Rsch
Student/Faculty Collaborative Research allows a student to conduct original research in close partnership with faculty collaborator(s). The project should be designed as an investigation yielding novel results that contribute to the area of study. With the faculty collaborator(s), students will develop the project and participate in all aspects fo the reasearch. It is expected that the faculty member will work closely with the student for at least half of the time the student is pursuing the research. The final project must be presented to the faculty collaborator(s) no later than one week prior to the end of the evaluation period. The course will typically earn one half or one full course credit per semester.

BIOL 560 Stu/Faculty Collaborative Rsch