Biological Sciences Faculty

Full-Time Faculty

Adjunct Faculty

Biological Sciences Program

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Dr. Donald F. Slish

Professor of Biological Sciences
Pre-Health Professions Advisory Committee Chair

I teach Cell Biology and several pharmacology related courses, as well as general education biology. I have always been fascinated by the mechanisms that drugs use to produce effects in the body, and I try to bring this interest into all of my teaching. I also am the chief pre-medical advisor at Plattsburgh State and am very excited about helping students to realize their goals in medicine.

My lab is investigating the pharmacological characterization of medicinal herbs. I screened a series of herbs (leave, roots and bark of plants), which are used in traditional medicine in Belize for their affect on aortic smooth muscle. Four of them produced very strong endothelium-independent relaxations of the tissue and are being further characterized. The whole aqueous extract of one of these herbs, Alseis yucatanensis was characterized for its multiple mechanisms of action. Current work is focused on the phytochemical and pharmacological characterization of another vasoactive plant, Nectandra salicifolia.


  • Ph.D., Cardiovascular Pharmacology, University of Cincinnati, 1991
  • B.S., Biochemistry, University of Scranton, 1985

Teaching Areas

Research Areas

  • Pharmacological characterization of medicinal herbs
  • Phytochemical isolation of active constituents of herbal extracts

Faculty Website

Recent Publications

  • Slish, D.F. (2005) Assessment of the use of the Jigsaw Method and Active Learning in Non-majors, Introductory Biology, Bioscene 31(4):4-10
  • Slish D.F., Arvigo, R. , and Balick, M. , (2004) Alseis yucatanensis: a natural product from Belize that exhibits multiple mechanisms of vasorelaxation, J. Ethnopharm. 92:297-302
  • Slish, D.F., Welsh, D.G. , and Brayden, J.E, (2002) Diacylglycerol and protein kinase C activate cation channels involved in myogenic tone, Am. J. Physiol. 283: H2196-H2201
  • Slish, D.F. , Creating computer animations of biological concepts, American Biology Teacher, 62(2) (2000) 94-97
  • Slish, D.F. , Ueda, H. , Arvigo, R. , and Balick, M.J. , Ethnobotany in the search for vasoactive herbal medicines, J. Ethnopharm. 66 (1999) 159-165
  • Upton, R., Graff, A., Williamson, E., Langer, R., Hatung, T., Rehwald, Flachsmann, E. A., Reich, E., Martinez, M., Chandra, A., Li, A., Isminger, P., Ko, R., and Slish, D.F. (1999) Hawthorn Leaf with Flower: Analytical, Quality Control, and Therapeutic Monograph American Herbal Pharmacopoeia, Santa Cruz, CA

Contact Donald Slish

Office: Hudson Hall 325
Phone: (518) 564-5160