Nancy L. Staub, Ph.D.

Professor of Biology

I am an organismal biologist interested specifically in salamander evolutionary biology. I study the evolution of sexual dimorphism and monomorphism in various salamander clades. I also have several projects focused on understanding how skin glands are...

Nancy Staub

Contact Information

Education & Curriculum Vitae

Ph.D., Zoology, University of California at Berkeley

B.A., Biology, Earlham College

Courses Taught

BIOL 105: Information Flow in Biological Systems

BIOL 207: Genetics

BIOL 334: Advanced Evolutionary Biology

BIOL 399: Advanced Topics

BIOL 484: Biology Research Seminar

BIOL 499: Senior Colloquium


I am an organismal biologist interested specifically in salamander evolutionary biology. I study the evolution of sexual dimorphism and monomorphism in various salamander clades. I also have several projects focused on understanding how skin glands are used in communication (which ones, of the many in amphibian skin, produce pheromones?). I enjoy all the teaching I do–from freshman introductory biology classes to senior seminars. If you are interested in working in my lab, please schedule a time to chat. I’m always looking for bright and motivated students to work in my lab.

Publications (* indicates undergraduate authors)

Staub NL. 2021. The Evolution of Derived Monomorphism from Sexual Dimorphism: A Case Study on Salamanders. Integrative Organismal Biology 3:1-15. obaa044. https://doi.org/10.1093/iob/obaa044

Woodley, SK and NL Staub. 2021. Pheromonal communication in urodelan amphibians. Cell and Tissue Research 2021:1-19. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00441-020-03408-1

Staub, NL, AB Stiller, KM Kiemnec-Tyburczy. 2020. A New Perspective on Female-to-Male Communication in Salamander Courtship. Integrative and Comparative Biology 60:722-31.

Orr, TJ, M Burns, K Hawkes, KE Holekamp, KA Hook, CC Josefson, AA Kimmitt, AK Lewis, SE Lipshutz, KS Lynch, LK Sirot, DJ Stadmauer, NL Staub, MR Walfner, V Hayssen. 2020. It takes two to tango: including a female perspective in reproductive biology. Integrative and Comparative Biology 60:796-813.

Rollins, RE* and NL Staub. 2017. The Presence of Caudal Courtship-like Glands in Male and Female Ouachita Dusky Salamanders (Desmognathus Brimleyorum). Herpetologica 73.277-282.

Mader, CM, CW Beck, WH Grillo, GP Hollowell, BS Hennington, NL Staub, VA Delesalle, D Lello, RB Merritt, GD Griffin, C Bradford, J Mao, LS Blumer, SL White. 2017. Multi-Institutional, Multidisciplinary Study of the Impact of Course-based Research Experiences. Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education 18:1-11.

Zack, R, EF Vacha, and NL Staub. 2017. Science in Action! Outreach Program Promotes Confidence in Teaching Science. The American Biology Teacher 79:711-719.

Staub, NL and RL Mueller. In press. Historical Perspective: David Burton Wake. Copeia 2017.

Staub, NL, LS Blumer, CW Beck, VA Delesalle, GD Griffin, RB Merritt, BS Hennington, WH Grillo, GP Hollowell, SL White, and CM Mader. 2016. Course-based Science Research Promotes Learning in Diverse Students at Diverse Institutions. Council for Undergraduate Research Quarterly 37:36-46.

Sever, DM, AD Pinsoneault*, B Wagner Mackenzie*, DS Siegel & NL Staub. 2016. A Description of the Skin Glands and Cloacal Morphology of the Plethodontid Salamander Karsenia koreana. Copeia 104:816-823.

Staub, NL, M Poxleitner, A Braley, H Smith-Flores, CM Pribbenow, L Jaworski, D Lopatto, and KR Anders. 2016. Scaling Up: Adapting a Phage-hunting Course to Increase Participation of First-year Students in Research. CBE – Life Sciences Education 15:1-11.

Staub, NL. 2016. The Age of Plethodontid Salamanders: A short review on longevity. Copeia 104:118-123.

Staub, NL. 2016. Age, Sexual Dimorphism, and Growth Rates in the Black Salamander, Aneides flavipunctatus (Plethodontidae). Copeia 104:52-59.

Hippe, SR,* CR Propper , and NL Staub. 2014. The presence of sexually dimorphic submandibular glands in Taricha granulosa the Rough-Skinned Newt (Salamandridae). Copeia 2014:38-43.

Sever, DM and NL Staub. 2010. Hormones, sex accessory structures and secondary sexual characters in amphibians, In "Hormones and Reproduction of Vertebrates" (D.O. Norris and K.H. Lopez, eds.), vol. 2, pp. 83-98, San Diego, Elsevier.

Fontana MF,* LD Houck, and NL Staub. 2007. In situ localization of plethodontid courtship pheromone mRNA in formalin-fixed tissue. Gen. Comp. Endocrinol. 150:480-485.

Fontana MF,* KA Ask,* RJ MacDonald,* AM Carnes,* and NL Staub. 2006. Loss of traditional mucous glands and presence of a novel mucus-producing granular gland in the plethodontid salamander Ensatina eschscholtzii.   Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 87: 469-477.

Staub, NL, PG Pauw, and D Pauw.* 2006. Seeing the forest through the trees: Helping students appreciate life’s diversity by building the Tree of Life. The American Biology Teacher 68:149-151.

Staub NL, CA Palmer, A Carnes,* C Quitiquit,* and M Susantio.* 2005. A dorsal tail tubercle containing hypertrophied granular and mucous glands is present in female Salamandra luschani (Salamandridae). Herpetologica 61(4):415-421.

Staub, NL and DB Wake. 2005. Aneides ferreus Cope, 1869, Clouded Salamander. Pp 658-660. In Lannoo, M.J. (Ed.), Amphibian Declines: The Conservation Status of United States Species. Volume 2: Species Accounts. University of California Press, Berkeley, California.

Staub, NL and DB Wake. 2005. Aneides flavipunctatus (Strauch, 1870), Black Salamander. Pp 660-661. In Lannoo, M.J. (Ed.), Amphibian Declines: The Conservation Status of United States Species. Volume 2: Species Accounts. University of California Press, Berkeley, California.

Staub, NL and DB Wake. 2005. Aneides lugubris (Hallowell, 1949), Arboreal Salamander. Pp 662-664. In Lannoo, M.J. (Ed.), Amphibian Declines: The Conservation Status of United States Species. Volume 2: Species Accounts. University of California Press, Berkeley, California.

Staub, NL and DB Wake. Aneides vagrans Wake and Jackman, 1998, Wandering Salamander. Pp 664-666. In Lannoo, M.J. (Ed.), Amphibian Declines: The Conservation Status of United States Species. Volume 2: Species Accounts. University of California Press, Berkeley, California.

Staub, NL. 2002. Teaching evolutionary mechanisms: Genetic drift and "M&M's"®, Bioscience 42:373-377.

Staub, NL and R Anderson.* 2001. A Novel Behavior For Urodeles: Micturition In The Plethodontid Salamander Aneides lugubris. Herpetological Review 32:158-9.

Staub, NL and M DeBeer.* 1997. The role of androgens in female vertebrates: A review. General and Comparative Endocrinology 108:1-24. Chosen for cover article.

Staub, NL and J Paladin.* 1997. The presence of modified granular glands in male and female Aneides lugubris (Amphibia: Plethodontidae). Herpetologica 53:339-344.

Staub, NL, CW Brown, and DB Wake. 1995. Movement patterns of the salamander Ensatina eschscholtzii platensis in the Sierra Nevada of California. Journal of Herpetology 29:593-599.

Staub, NL. 1995. Plethodon idahoensis Predation. Herpetological Review 26: 199.

Staub, NL. 1993. Intraspecific agonistic behavior of the salamander Aneides flavipunctatus (Amphibia: Plethodontidae) with comparisons to other plethodontid species. Herpetologica 49:271-282.