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Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Department of Biological Sciences
Biology Faculty
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Department of Biological Sciences
1W14 Jonsson-Rowland Science Center
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
110 Eighth Street
Troy, NY 12180-3590

Phone: (518) 276-6446
Fax: (518) 276-2344

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Joyce J. Diwan

Professor Emerita
Previously Director, Undergraduate Biochemistry and Biophysics Program (retired)

Education and Training

A.B. Mount Holyoke College
Ph.D. University of Illinois (Medical Center, Chicago)
Postdoctoral Appointment, University of Pennsylvania

Dr. Diwan received her Ph.D. with Henry Tedeschi at University of Illinois, performed her postdoctoral studies with Berton Pressman in the Johnson Foundation at University of Pennsylvania, and joined Rensselaer in 1969.



Office for mail: Science Center Rm. 1W14

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
110 8th Street
Troy, NY 12180

Research Interests

Development of web-based materials for teaching biochemistry in studio-format. 

Currently, I maintain, though I no longer update, an integrated package of computer-based learning tools for teaching biochemistry in a studio format. The Biochemistry of Metabolism website includes lecture notes with diagrams and animations, interactive self-study quizzes, references to recent review articles, and instructions and data files for studio exercises. Some studio exercises use Chime to explore protein structure/function relationships. Others involve data analysis and/or problem solving. This educational website was peer reviewed by MERLOT in 2003 & 2004, and described in 2005 in the NetWatch column of Science 309, 27. This project was supported by a Strategic Initiatives Grant from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, a grant from the National Science Foundation, Division of Undergraduate Education, and a grant from the Basic Biosciences Minigrants Foundation.

I previously carried out NIH-supported research characterizing the kinetics and reagent-sensitivity of K+ and Mg++ transport into mitochondria, using radioisotope tracers. While attempting to purify ion channels from mitochondrial membranes, patch clamping and fluorescent probes were used to detect and characterize ion transport activities of reconstituted preparations.

Selected Publications

Diwan, J. J., Biochemistry of metabolism: Instructional materials for a studio-format course. (accessible via the World Wide Web since 2000 and updated annually).

Traver, H. A., M. J. Kalsher, J. J. Diwan, & J. T. Warden (2001). Student reactions and learning: Evaluation of a biochemistry course that uses Web technology and student collaboration. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education 29, 50-53.

Roy, H., J. Diwan, L. D. Segel, and I. H. Segel (2001) Computer-Assisted Simulations of Phosphofructokinase-1 Kinetics Using Simplified Velocity Equations. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education 29, 3-9.

Murphy, R. C., J. J. Diwan, M. King, and K. W. Kinnally (1998) Two high conductance channels of the mitochondrial inner membrane are independent of the human mitochondrial genome. FEBS Letters 425, 259-262.

Paliwal, R., G. Costa, and J. J. Diwan (1992) Purification and patch clamp analysis of a 40 pS channel from rat liver mitochondria. Biochemistry 31, 2223-2229.

Diwan, J.J., R. Paliwal, E. Kaftan, and R. Bawa (1990) A mitochondrial protein fraction catalyzing transport of the K+ analog Tl+. FEBS Letters 273, 215-218.

Diwan, J. J., T. Haley, and D. R. Sanadi (1988) Reconstitution of Transmembrane K+ transport with a 53 kilodalton mitochondrial protein. Biochemical & Biophysical Research Comm. 153, 224-230.

Diwan, J. J., T. Haley, and C. Moore (1988) Sensitivity of mitochondrial Mg++ flux  to reagents which affect K+ flux. Journal of Bioenergetics & Biomembranes 20, 261-271.

Diwan, J. J., H. H. Yune, R. Bawa, T. Haley and  C. A. Mannella (1988) Outer membrane lysis enhances uptake of spermidine & methylglyoxal-bis(guanylhydrazone) by rat liver mitochondria. Biochemical Pharmacology 37, 957-961.

Diwan, J. J. (1987) Mitochondrial transport of K+ and Mg2+. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 895, 155-165 (Invited review).

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Department of Biological Sciences