Science and Math Department Chair
Assistant Professor of Molecular Genetics
Research Interest: Mechanisms of DNA Damage Repair and Genome Maintenance

The maintenance of genome stability is critical for the faithful replication and segregation of chromosomes, which lowers the incidence of disease and cancer. However, damage to DNA from endogenous (eg. DNA replication failure) and exogenous (eg. UV) sources results in a wide array of events, such as loss of heterozygosity, chromosome loss, and translocation, which are common in many cancers.

Dr. Meyer's research employs the use of the model organism Saccharomyces cerevisiae, to understand the pathways in cells which repair various forms of DNA damage and maintain chromosome integrity using a combination of classical and molecular genetics, molecular biology and physical assays.

Assistant Professor of Biomedical Sciences
Director of Accreditation and Assessment
Research Interest: Assessment of Teaching and Learning; Nutritional Effects on Neural Stem Cells

Dr. Corniola has a varied research career from food and nutrition science to neuroscience and assessment of teaching and learning.

Her research experiences (including post-doctoral work at Stanford University) include:

  • Trace metals in behavior (learning, memory, anxiety, depression)
  • Trace metals in adult neurogenesis (proliferation, differentiation, and survival of neuronal stem cells)
  • Effects of reactive oxygen species in adult neurogenesis
  • Effects of irradiation and reactive oxygen species on learning and memory

Dr. Corniola’s current basic science research interests focus on how nutrition affects molecular and cellular mechanisms in adult neuronal stem cells.

As Director of Assessment and Accreditation, Dr. Corniola is interested in the assessment of teaching and learning. Her goals are to help develop methodologies and tools that effectively measure student performance and thus help the continuous quality improvement of the educational programs. Faculty use assessment data to help hone their craft in teaching and students use assessment data to scale their performance and identify areas for improvement.

Picture of robot toy on Scrabble board

There can be something a little creepy about robots roaming down hospital corridors that are responsible for human lives. But they are already part of our medical world: While some service robots dispense medications and food, newer therapeutic models (such as Huggable) are designed to comfort sick children.

“We’re interacting with machines on a daily basis and they’re changing our understanding of ourselves,” according to CHS professor Dr. William Davis, “This is especially evident in the health sciences; for instance, elderly patients have carebots that they view as pets, while young patients are coaxed out of anxiety by bots that make them happy.”

It’s this philosophical distinction between humanist and post humanist perspectives that fuels Davis’ research agenda about artificial agents that interact with humans. He notes that our definitions of morality now include thinking of the environment and non-human animals as valuable beings.

Davis is currently including current issues of technology and culture in his teaching of PHLT 420, a Pre-Medical Post-Bac class about Biopsychosocial Framework for the Health Professions. His next course, Oral Communication, will also investigate how we are connected (writing, speaking, ways we organize facts) with technology as extensions of ourselves.

For more information about technology and its use in the health sciences, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Assistant Professor of Chemistry
Research Interest: Computational Molecular Chemistry

Dr. Valley's research focuses on the use and advancement of computational theoretical modeling to more fully understand molecular interactions at soft matter interfaces. He seeks to understand fundamental processes of these chemical systems by use of quantum mechanical and molecular dynamics calculations to be able to improve applications in drug design, interfacial uptake and processing in environmental and biological systems, and combustion pollutant capture technologies.

Students working with Dr. Valley will learn to use computational chemistry software that will allow them to visualize the dynamics of and predict the properties and behavior of organic molecules, proteins, DNA, RNA, polymers, ionic liquids, and other chemical systems relevant to health and technology.

Research Interest: Underlying Neurobiology of Psychiatric and Neurodevelopmental Disorders

Throughout her research career, Dr. Molly Foote has been interested in the development and validation of animal models to study the genes, pathways and biomarkers related to neurological disorders. Dr. Molly Foote’s research experience (including postdoctoral work at UC Davis) includes:

  • Investigating the underlying disease mechanism of neurodevelopmental Disorders, such as schizophrenia, Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and Fragile X Syndrome
  • Understanding disease progression and intervention of neurodegenerative disorders, such as Fragile X-associated Tremor/Ataxia Syndrome (FXTAS) and Parkinson’s disease
  • Developing and standardizing of the assessment of rodent behavior for the validation of novel human disease animal models
  • Utilizing immunohistochemistry and microscopy techniques to identify synaptic and gross neuroanatomical alterations implicated in various neurological diseases


Phone: 916-686-7300




California Northstate University
College of Health Sciences
2910 Prospect Park Drive
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670

College Code

SAT College Code: 7669
ACT College Code: 7032