Steven B. Haase


Associate Professor of Biology

Our group is broadly interested in understanding the biological clock mechanisms that control the timing of events during the cell division cycle. In 2008, the Haase group proposed a new model in which a complex network of sequentially activated transcription factors regulates the precise timing of gene expression during the cell-cycle, and functions as a robust time-keeping oscillator. Greater than a thousand genes are expressed at distinct phases of the cycle, and the control network itself consists of ~20 components, so this dynamical system is far too complex to understand simply by biological intuition. We rely heavily on the expertise of the Harer group (Dept. of Mathematics, Duke University) for the analysis of complex data, and their understanding of dynamical systems.  Using a collection of tools, including molecular genetics, genomics, mathematical models, and statistical inference, our groups aim to understand how the cell division clock works, how it might be perturbed in proliferative diseases such as cancer, and how the clock components might be targeted for new anti-tumor therapies.  Qualitatively, the clock networks that control the yeast cell cycle look much like the networks controlling circadian rhythms in a variety of organisms. More recently, we have been using our experimental and quantitative approaches to investigate the function of circadian clocks, as well as clocks that control the division and development of pathogenic organisms such as P. falciparum and P. vivax, the causative agents of malaria.

Appointments and Affiliations

  • Associate Professor of Biology
  • Associate Professor in Medicine

Contact Information

  • Office Location: 4316 French, Durham, NC 27708
  • Office Phone: (919) 613-8205
  • Email Address:
  • Websites:


  • Ph.D. Stanford University, 1993
  • B.S. Colorado State University, 1985

Courses Taught

  • BIOLOGY 218: Biological Clocks: How Organisms Keep Time
  • BIOLOGY 293: Research Independent Study
  • BIOLOGY 432S: Biology of Host-Pathogen Interactions
  • BIOLOGY 490S: Special Topics Seminar
  • BIOLOGY 493: Research Independent Study
  • BIOLOGY 728D: University Program in Genetics and Genomics Biological Solutions Module IV
  • CMB 778D: University Program in Genetics and Genomics Biological Solutions Module IV
  • MATH 190: Special Topics in Mathematics
  • MGM 778D: University Program in Genetics and Genomics Biological Solutions Module IV
  • UPGEN 701: Advanced Topics in Genetics and Genomics
  • UPGEN 750S: Genetics Colloquium
  • UPGEN 778C: University Program in Genetics and Genomics Biological Solutions Module Ill
  • UPGEN 778D: University Program in Genetics and Genomics Biological Solutions Module IV

In the News

Representative Publications

  • Smith, LM; Motta, FC; Chopra, G; Moch, JK; Nerem, RR; Cummins, B; Roche, KE; Kelliher, CM; Leman, AR; Harer, J; Gedeon, T; Waters, NC; Haase, SB, An intrinsic oscillator drives the blood stage cycle of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum., Science (New York, N.Y.), vol 368 no. 6492 (2020), pp. 754-759 [10.1126/science.aba4357] [abs].
  • Cho, C-Y; Kelliher, CM; Haase, SB, The cell-cycle transcriptional network generates and transmits a pulse of transcription once each cell cycle., Cell Cycle, vol 18 no. 4 (2019), pp. 363-378 [10.1080/15384101.2019.1570655] [abs].
  • Kelliher, CM; Foster, MW; Motta, FC; Deckard, A; Soderblom, EJ; Moseley, MA; Haase, SB, Layers of regulation of cell-cycle gene expression in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae., Molecular Biology of the Cell, vol 29 no. 22 (2018), pp. 2644-2655 [10.1091/mbc.E18-04-0255] [abs].
  • Moseley, RC; Mewalal, R; Motta, F; Tuskan, GA; Haase, S; Yang, X, Conservation and Diversification of Circadian Rhythmicity Between a Model Crassulacean Acid Metabolism Plant Kalanchoë fedtschenkoi and a Model C3 Photosynthesis Plant Arabidopsis thaliana., Frontiers in Plant Science, vol 9 (2018) [10.3389/fpls.2018.01757] [abs].
  • Kelliher, CM; Haase, SB, Connecting virulence pathways to cell-cycle progression in the fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans., Current Genetics, vol 63 no. 5 (2017), pp. 803-811 [10.1007/s00294-017-0688-5] [abs].