Coronavirus Updates and Information

Lisanne Winslow, Ph.D.

Professor of Biology

Contact Information

Nazareth Hall 3042

651-631-5266

Welcome to the world of Rev. Dr. Lisanne Winslow where biology and theology represent one unified revelation of God, His divine excellencies and supreme beauty. Dr. Lisanne Winslow holds a Master’s degree in Biology and PhD in Cell Biology and Biochemistry, as well as Master’s Degree in Theology and Religion, and a second PhD in Systematic Theology and Divinity. She is also an ordained minister in the Congregational church where she has brought a living dynamic Romans 1:20 spirituality to her ministry.

Look for two new books by Dr. Winslow coming out Spring 2020!

A Great and Remarkable Analogy: Jonathan Edwards' Onto-Typology of Nature
Yale University Jonathan Edwards Center, “New Directions in Edwards Series” published through Vandenhoek and Ruprecht Publishers.

A Trinitarian Theology of Nature
The Princeton Theological Monograph Series, published through Wipf & Stock Publishers with a Foreword by Dr. Alister McGrath, Director of the Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion at the University of Oxford.

Two sand dollars in lab

Specialty Areas

Marine Biology
Immunology
Science and Theology
Systematic Theology
Jonathan Edwards Studies

Education

PhD Systematic Theology and Divinity, The King’s College, University of Aberdeen, Scotland
MA Theology and Religion, United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities, New Brighton, MN
Ph.D., Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Newark, NJ. Department of Biological Sciences.
M.S., Biological Sciences, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.
Physiology Course, Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, MA.
B.A., Biological Sciences, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Newark, NJ.

Sea urchins in an aquarium with coral decorations

Professional Experience

2002-present University of Northwestern-St Paul, MN. Full-Professor and Scholar-in-Residence.
Department of Biology and Biochemistry, and Department of Biblical and Theological Studies.

1996-2000 Boston University, Boston, MA, Assistant Professor, CGS, Division of Science and Mathematics,
Physical Chemistry lecture and laboratory; General Biology lecture and laboratory.

1993-1996 Harvard University Medical School, Brigham and Women's Hospital,
Department of Pathology, Boston, MA.
Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, Laboratory of Dr. James Madara.

Starfish on seabed

Professional Affiliations

Science and Theology Network-Twin Cities, St Paul, MN (Board Member)
The Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences (CTN- Berkley)
Ian Ramsey Center for Science and Religion (Oxford University)
Jonathan Edwards Center, Yale University Divinity School
The American Society for Cell Biology
The American Association of Immunologists
International Society for Zoology
International Society of Occasionalism
American Academy of Religion

Sea urchin in its aquatic habitat

Research at Northwestern

My scientific and scholarly research integrates two academic disciplines, Biology and Theology. While these disciplines may seem in opposition, they are in fact one dynamic and unified revelation of God to humankind. Please scroll down to see scientific research in Cellular Marine Immunology in our research labs, and further down to see research uncovering the integration of Biology and Theology in a Trinitarian Theology of Nature.

Welcome to Marine Biology at University of Northwestern!
There is plenty of sea life swimming around the labs at Northwestern. We have three 120 gallon aquaria and many smaller aquaria teeming with marine invertebrate life for student investigation and scientific research.
In my lab, we study the role of immune cells in the body cavities of marine invertebrates. These cells, called coelomocytes, have the power to fight infections, heal wounds and combat disease. Our primary model system is the sea urchin, Lytechinus variegates, a warm-water species from the Gulf of Mexico. However, additional student projects include investigation of coelomocytes in starfish and sea cucumbers as well as sea anemones and jellyfish.
Immune Cell Function and Cell Motility In order to understand how coelomocytes fight disease, we must first understand how the cells function. There are five distinct cell types in the sea urchin called coelomocytes. Each of these coelomocyte subtypes possesses a unique cell shape, cell motility, and physiological function. Research projects are ongoing in my lab on each of these cell types. Students also study the coelomocytes from other marine invertebrates such as starfish, sea cucumbers, sea anemones, comb jellies (ctenophores) and jellyfish.

Environmental Stewardship-Gulf Oil Spill of 2010
As stewards of God's creation we seek to study the environment and help to contribute to the care of the environment. The massive and catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico was deemed the most devastating environmental catastrophe in human history. Our research on sea urchin immunity was significantly affected by this event since we have been studying sea urchins for 10 years in this region. Since the oil spill, we have been conducting toxicology studies on the sea urchins and the morbidity effects of the pollutant on immunity and longevity.

Wound Healing and Regeneration
Echinoderms such as sea urchins, starfish, and sea cucumbers have amazing powers of regeneration. We have studied sea urchin regeneration in the form of wound closure. Sea urchin coelomocytes are responsible for initial wound closure and subsequent healing of wounds. We have investigated the cellular and immunological pathways of wound healing and the effects of electromagnetic energy on the acceleration of these pathways on a molecular level.
On my visit to Japan in March 2011 with 10 Northwestern students, we have begun a new research track in my lab. We are beginning to investigate the role of coelomocytes in the regeneration of arms in the brittle star. These tiny, beautiful creatures have a defense mechanism called autotomy where they will detach an arm in the presence of danger, then regenerate the arm within a few weeks. Beginning fall 2011, we will launch a new research direction investigating autotomy and regeneration of the brittle star arm and the role of coelomocytes in this dynamic process.

Explore the nature world from a Christian worldview in Science and Theology Research and Study!
Since 2010 University of Northwestern has been an international force for Science and Theology with collaborations at Oxford University, Yale Divinity School, Harvard Divinity School, and University of Aberdeen, Scotland. I have taken my 25 years as a research marine biologist to a study of God’s divine action and presence in the natural world. Using the theology of Jonathan Edwards, as well as theologians such as Tomas F Torrance, Karl Barth, Emil Brunner, Alister McGrath and others I have formulated a Theology of Nature, one that is intentionally Trinitarian. In this constructive Trinitarian Theology of Nature expounds a

Theo-logy of Nature- God is willing the creation into existence,

Christology of Nature- communicating the knowledge and glory of God in Christ, by Christ, for Christ and through Christ
Pneumatology of Nature – the Spirit revealing those truths to the creature.

In this way, all of nature is God’s diving acting (willing, communicating and revealing) to confide the beautiful and glorious attributes of God’s Self to the creature.

We offer students a Minor in Science and Theology to explore these themes as well as coursework and research.

Students in a classroom holding a lizard and observing it

Courses I Teach

In the Department of Biology and Biochemistry
Principles of Biology I and II
Immunology
Cell Biology
Animal Biology

In the Department of Biblical and Theological Studies
Systematic Theology
Science and Theology
Jonathan Edwards Seminar
Problem of Evil and Suffering
Metaphysics of Science

Group of students examining a rock connected to a body of water

Ministry: Spirituality and the Environment, Sustainable Ecojustice

This ministry to students, congregations, and others involves a revival of what the Psalmist said in Psalm 19

The heavens declare the glory of God
the skies proclaim the work of his hands
Day after day they pour forth speech;
night after night they reveal knowledge.
They have no speech, they use no words;
no sound is heard from them. Yet their voice
goes out into all the earth,
their words to the ends of the world.

One wonders what nature is declaring and proclaiming that has been seen and felt by every people group in every time period in human history? There is a feeling of the numinous, the divine, just by being in nature This is because the ancient scriptures instruct us that nature proclaims the glory of God. In our ministry, we seek to hear those very messages that God has embedded into the structures and mechanisms of creation in a gospel of nature. Now, this is not a different message of the Gospel in Jesus Christ, but one unified message in Christ where God proclaims the knowledge and glory of His love, faithfulness, goodness and divine beauty through what has been made. In this, we enter into a fresh spirituality of letting the beauty of God reflected in nature speak to our deepest needs. We get refreshed and renewed in body, mind, and spirit. We, in turn, care for the earth not only because it was mandated for humankind to do so in Genesis as stewards, but also because all of the creation reflects the Creator in knowledge and beauty. By caring for the environment we are loving God who has generously revealed Himself to us in ways that we encounter every day.

Mothers day craft built using toothpicks

When I'm not working

So, with all of this research, teaching and ministry is there any time left for fun? Yes! I have two beautiful and amazing daughters, Arianna and Sophia who are my partners on life's journey. They trek with me around the globe to all of the world oceans that I am blessed to be able to study.

I have had the great opportunity to study a wide variety of world oceans such as the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean Sea, Mediterranean Sea in the south of France, Ligurian Sea in northern Italy, Aegean Sea in Greece (Crete), the North Pacific and Puget Sound, the Asian Pacific Rim in Japan. I stand in amazement of God's creation in all its beauty and complexity and I consider myself blessed to be able to spend my life studying the amazing creature that inhabits these waters.

I also enjoy writing poetry and have published nine books of poetry. I also appreciate art, music, travel, photography, and theater.

From: In Praise of Creation

Six arms move slowly
peace found in simplicity
learn from the starfish,

Tide pool rocks whisper
anemones are all closed
high tide will come soon.

The sea is in rage
winds blow, fury, tempest
I will go to prayer.

Selected Scientific Publications and Presentations

Biology

Bardwell, Abigail, Danielle Card, Austin Chiappetta, Jake Colombo, Jake Franzen, Melody Harper, Kolton Jacobson, and Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow. (2016) Learning and Memory in Marine Crustaceans. Biology Symposium, University of Northwestern, St. Paul, MN.

Blomberg, Linnea, Timothy Thao, Arianna Winslow, and Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow. (2016) Effects of Pulsed Electromagnetic Fields on Starfish Immune Cell Motility. Biology Symposium, University of Northwestern, St. Paul, MN.

Florin, Heidi, Issac Meredith and Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow. (2014) Development of a Novel Protocol for Examination of Brittle Star, Ophiolepis ailsea, Regeneration after Autotomy. Biology Symposium, University of Northwestern, St. Paul, MN.

Christenson, Emily, Anna Goldberg, Jennifer Terhark, Laurie Edwards and Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow. (2014). Novel Comparative Anatomy of the Sea Horse, Hippocampus reidi, with the Pipefish Syngnathus louisianae. Biology Symposium, University of Northwestern, St. Paul, MN.

D’Andrea-Winslow, L. and Novitski, A. K. (2008). “Active bleb formation is abated in Lytechinus variagatus red spherule coelomocytes upon disruption of acto-myosin contractility.” Integrative Zoology 3:106-113.

D’Andrea-Winslow, L., Strohmeier, G., Rossi, B., and Hofman, P. (2001). “Identification of a Na/K/2Cl cotransporter (NKCC) in sea urchin coelomocytes: microfilament dependent surface expression mediated by hypotonic shock and cAMP.” J. Exp Biol 204:147-156

Theology

D’Andrea-Winslow, L and Schultz, W. J. (2019). “Advancing the Dialogue: A Trinitarian Theology of Nature.” Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith (Manuscript in Review).

D’Andrea-Winslow, L and Schultz, W. J. (2018). “The Solubility of Salt: A Theistic Account.” Theology and Science 16:107-125

Schultz, W. J. and D’Andrea-Winslow, L. (2018). “Divine Compositionalism as Occasionalism.” Book Chapter in Occasionalism Revisited: New Essays from the Islamic and Western Philosophical Traditions. Edited by Nazif Muhtaroglu. Abu Dhabi: Kalam Research and Media.

Schultz, W. J. and D’Andrea-Winslow, L. (2017). “Causality, Dispositions and a New Occasionalism.” Zygon 52 (4):962-983.

D’Andrea-Winslow, L. (2015). “Toward a Theology of Nature.” The Congregationalist 167(4): 8-13.

D’Andrea-Winslow, L. and Schultz, W. J. (2014) “Divine Compositionalism: A Form of Occasionalism or a Preferable Alternative View of Divine Action” Theology and Science 12.3: 216-235.

Brandenburg, Lindsay, Walter Schultz, and Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow. (2014) God’s Divine Action in Molecular Analysis of Muscle Contraction. Biology Symposium, University of Northwestern, St. Paul, MN.

Little, Shelby, Rebecca Bailey, Walter J. Schultz and Lisanne D’Andrea-Winslow. (2014) Typology of Rhodopsin in the Mammalian Visual System as a Shadow of the Mechanism of the Divine Light of Christ. Biology Symposium, University of Northwestern, St. Paul, MN.

Schultz, W. J. and D’Andrea-Winslow, L. (2013). “The Structures of the Actual World.” Proceedings of the Association of Christians in the Mathematical Sciences 2013 :168-186.

My lifelong passion to integrate faith and the study of biology influences my teaching and my research at University of Northwestern.
Lisanne Winslow
Professor of Biology

Become a Student

Apply

Visit us on Campus

Schedule a Visit

Ask Questions & Connect

Contact Us
Array ( )