Faculty Profile

Dr. Dan Kuebler

Professor of Biology

Kuebler_largeEvery athlete has heard the sage advice: stretch, stretch, stretch. But does it really work?

Franciscan University biology professor and cross country head coach Dr. Dan Kuebler is leading several of his students on a quest to find out. Over the next year, they will conduct research to answer the question: Does more flexibility lead to fewer injuries or to better performance?

This will be Kuebler’s second major research project at Franciscan University. His first project has focused on seeking a cure for epilepsy. Under Kuebler’s direction, since 2002 Franciscan University biology majors have studied fruit flies to learn about seizure disorders in humans.

“The first few years, we were trying to trigger the seizures to see what was causing them; now we’re starting to focus on how,” Kuebler explains.

An Ohio native, Kuebler majored in English at Catholic University, where he met his wife, Nellie, who, like him, was “an English major who turned to science.” She became a nurse, and he completed a PhD in molecular and cell biology at the University of California at Berkeley.

In 2001, Kuebler came to teach at Franciscan, where the school’s Catholic orthodoxy and eager, enthusiastic students doubly impressed him. “It’s refreshing to be able to speak about ethical issues in biology,” he says, “and to look at the intersection of the Catholic faith and scientific issues such as evolution.”

On this topic, he has co-authored a book, The Evolution Controversy (Baker Academic), critiquing the various theories of evolution. While hesitant to label his own position, Kuebler remains confident that the scientific understanding of evolution an the Catholic understanding of creation are two complementary ways of understanding our world.

And, until his research is completed, he’s also hesitant to tell his four children, Joseph, Patrick, Carolyn, and Brendan, whether or not to stretch.

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