Dr. Cluett taught for ten years in the Boston Public School system. He received his Ph.D. in biochemistry from Cornell University in 1992 where he worked with Bill Brown. He was a postdoctoral fellow at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine from 1992 to 1997 with Carolyn Machamer. Before joining the Biology Department at Ithaca College in 2001, he worked for two years with the Cornell Institute for Biology Teachers.
I am also a faculty member in the Biochemistry program.
Cholesterol is an important component of mammalian cell membranes. The ability of cells to deal with cholesterol has important implications for the treatment of heart disease and infection by certain pathogens. Impaired cholesterol trafficking plays a role in neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's Disease and developmental defects. We are interested in the mechanisms and routes that cholesterol follows inside cells after its release from LDL particles. Our research focuses on the role of membrane tubules as a way to move cholesterol-rich membrane domains from one location to another in the cell.
Our second avenue of research involves the development of lab activities for high school and middle school classrooms. This gives students, especially those in the Teaching Option, insights into the development, preparation, and implementation of lab activities in the classroom. We have published a microscopy lab that determines the pH in cell organelles, and other lab exercises in development include classification/evolution and seasonal changes in plant pigments.
I am also the science education coordinator for the Teaching Option in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics. I serve as academic advisor and student teaching supervisor for students in these programs.