Kristen Johnson

Phone: (603) 641-4177
Office: Life Sciences, 88 Commercial Street, RM 630, Manchester, NH 03101
Kristen Johnson

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin

Dr. Kristen Johnson is passionate about training her students to become problem-solving scientists. Her approach to classroom teaching involves collaborative team-based learning, and her courses integrate critical reading and analysis of primary research articles. With a focus on experiential learning, her laboratory course work closely complements lecture instruction, incorporates the latest technologies and is often inquiry-based: student-designed experiments with unknown outcomes.

Dr. Johnson mentors many undergraduate students conducting research in her cancer biology lab, which focuses on understanding the role of several genes in the progression of pancreatic cancer. Using RNA interference and CRISPR to modulate gene expression, the Johnson lab studies the impacts of altering the expression of these genes on the malignancy of pancreatic cancer cells.


  • Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • A.B., Dartmouth College

Courses Taught

  • 413/599: Principles of Biology I Lab
  • 695: Exploring Biology Teaching
  • 777/877: Molecular Biology& Biotech Lab
  • 792: Research
  • 793: Internship
  • 850/750: Cancer Biology
  • 891: Applied Research
  • 892: Graduate Internship
  • 893: Directed Graduate Research
  • BIOL/BSCI 413/599: Principles of Biology I Lab 4
  • BIOT 515: MYS Second Yr Seminar
  • BIOT 753/853: Cell Culture
  • BIOT 754/853: Cell Culture Lab
  • BIOT 777/877: Molecular Biology &Biotech Lab
  • BMCB 753: Cell Culture Lab
  • BSCI 695: Exploring Biology Teaching
  • BSCI 750: Cancer Biology
  • BSCI 777: Molecular Biology& Biotech Lab
  • BSCI 792: Research
  • BSCI 793: Internship

Selected Publications

Johnson, K. C., Sabel, J. L., Cole, J., Pruett, C. L., Plymale, R., & Reyna, N. S. (2022). From genetics to biotechnology: Synthetic biology as a flexible course-embedded research experience. BIOCHEMISTRY AND MOLECULAR BIOLOGY EDUCATION. doi:10.1002/bmb.21662

Bono, P., Cordero, E., Johnson, K., Borowsky, M., Ramesh, V., Jacks, T., & Hynes, R. O. (2005). Layilin, a cell surface hyaluronan receptor, interacts with merlin and radixin.. Exp Cell Res, 308(1), 177-187. doi:10.1016/j.yexcr.2005.04.017

Kissil, J. L., Wilker, E. W., Johnson, K. C., Eckman, M. S., Yaffe, M. B., & Jacks, T. (2003). Merlin, the product of the Nf2 tumor suppressor gene, is an inhibitor of the p21-activated kinase, Pak1.. Mol Cell, 12(4), 841-849. doi:10.1016/s1097-2765(03)00382-4

Johnson, K. C., Kissil, J. L., Fry, J. L., & Jacks, T. (2002). Cellular transformation by a FERM domain mutant of the Nf2 tumor suppressor gene. ONCOGENE, 21(39), 5990-5997. doi:10.1038/sj.onc.1205693

Kissil, J. L., Johnson, K. C., Eckman, M. S., & Jacks, T. (2002). Merlin phosphorylation by p21-activated kinase 2 and effects of phosphorylation on merlin localization.. J Biol Chem, 277(12), 10394-10399. doi:10.1074/jbc.M200083200

Becker, K. B., Stephens, K. C., Davey, J. C., Schneider, M. J., & Galton, V. A. (1997). The Type 2 and Type 3 Iodothyronine Deiodinases Play Important Roles in Coordinating Development in Rana catesbeiana Tadpoles*. Endocrinology, 138(7), 2989-2997. doi:10.1210/endo.138.7.5272

Most Cited Publications