Associate Professor of Biology
Neufeld Science Centre 111D
+1 (604) 513-2121 ext. 3446

Department(s) or Program(s)

Research & Scholarship


Ph.D., University of British Columbia, 2003.

B.Sc. (Hons.), University of British Columbia, 1996.

Awards & Honors

Area of Research

Research in my lab is focused on the genetics of pattern formation and signaling, using the common fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster as a model organism. The superior genetic and molecular biology tools available in Drosophila make this organism second to none for developmental biology studies. Current projects include investigating the role of cell-cell junction components in tissue patterning and examining the insulin signaling pathway in flies.

I also conduct education research in the areas of genetics and cell biology. I am particularly interested in developing and evaluating active-learning methods to improve learning outcomes in these areas.

Recent Publications

Venema, D.R. (2011). Intelligent design, abiogenesis, and learning from history: a reply to Meyer. Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith 63 (3), 183-192.

Venema, D.R. (2010). Seeking a signature: essay book review of Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design by Stephen C. Meyer. Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith 62 (4), 276-283.

Venema, D.R. (2010). Genesis and the genome: genomics evidence for human – ape common ancestry and ancestral hominid population sizes. Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith 62 (3), 166-178.

Venema, D.R. (2010). An evangelical geneticist's critique of Reason to Believe's Testable Creation Model. BioLogos Foundation.

Venema, D.R. (2009). Laboratory exercises to examine recombination and aneuploidy in Drosophila. American Biology Teacher 71 (6), 325-332.

Venema, D.R. and Paulton, R. (2009). A Christian Perspective on Biology. In Christian Worldview and the Academic Disciplines: Crossing the Academy, Downey, E.D. and Porter, S.E., Eds.  McMaster Divinity College Press General Series, Wipf and Stock, Eugene, Oregon.

Venema, D.R. (2006). Enhancing undergraduate teaching and research with a Drosophila virginizing system. CBE-Life Sciences Education 5, 353-360.

 Venema, D.R., Ben-Mordehai, T., and Auld, V.J. (2004). Transient apical polarization of Gliotactin and Coracle is required for parallel alignment of wing hairs in Drosophila. Developmental Biology 275, 301-314.


Developmental biology, cell and molecular biology, genetics, science education, creationism, intelligent design and evolution

Courses Taught

Introduction to Biology II (non-majors) (BIOL 104)
Immunology (BIOL 336)
Introduction to Genetics (BIOL 371)
Biotechnology and Christian Theology (BIOL/BIOT 390)
Advanced Cell and Molecular Biology (BIOL 423)
Virology (BIOL 438)
Senior Thesis supervision (BIOL 409/410)