N. Dean Pentcheff

This page last updated September 2004

Academic Experience

Loyola Marymount University, Biology Department, Visiting Assistant Professor (Full-Time)
Instruction in upper-level biology major courses, including: Invertebrate Zoology (with laboratory), Evolutionary Biology, and Biomechanics (with laboratory).

Ongoing collaborative research in coral reef mass transport effects on photosynthesis.
Collaboration with C. Finelli (Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium) and D. Wethey (University of South Carolina). Two missions (1999 and 2000) in the Aquarius habitat (NOAA/NURC, Key Largo FL) and third surface mission in 2002. Investigations into the role of water flow and small-scale mixing on mass transport near corals, and hence on mass exchange, metabolism, and photosynthetic efficiency.

1992-1997 (University of South Carolina, Columbia SC.)
Research in flow effects on prey location in blue crabs (Callinectes sapidus).
Investigation of odor dispersal from potential prey in tidal creeks, and how the resulting odor signal is used by blue crabs to find food. Involved a combination of field experiments, laboratory flume experiments, and computer simulations.

1985-1992 (University of California at Berkeley, CA.)
Graduate research in biomechanics and morphological plasticity in barnacles (Balanus glandula).
Investigation of differences in feeding structure morphology in different populations, and the roles of physical forces and feeding effects in inducing the plasticity. Involved field sampling, field experiments, and laboratory manipulations. Research performed at the Friday Harbor Laboratories, University of Washington, WA.

Information Technology Experience

1997-2001 University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, Department of Biological Sciences.
Server and workstation support, webmaster, and postmaster for faculty, graduate students, and undergraduate teaching in a large academic department. Included a broad range of systems administration, networking, and troubleshooting.

1996 University of South Carolina, School of the Environment.
Contracted to specify, purchase, and install all administrative computing systems for the new School of the Environment. Included software and hardware selection, training and setup.

1991 University of Washington, Seattle, WA.
Contract programming to design, author, and maintain patch-clamp analysis software for neurophysiology data.

1990 University of Washington, Friday Harbor Laboratories, WA.
Part-time. Planned, installed, and maintained the computer facility of this marine laboratory.

1983-1985 University of Washington, Seattle, WA.
Full-time computer support for two research laboratories. Included system administration, programming, and user support for minicomputer systems (an Interdata 8/32 running System 7 Unix (the first non-PDP Unix), and a Data General MV-10000 running AOS and DG/UX) as well as software development and algorithm design for quantitative cell morphology. Designed, authored, and maintained the PCS-II program system for stereology support, sold commercially by the University of Washington.


1985-1992 University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, CA. Graduate study in marine biomechanics.

1978-1982 Duke University, Durham, NC. (B.Sc.) Major in Zoology.

1974-1978 Ardsley High School, Ardsley, NY.

Selected Publications

Pentcheff, N. D. 2002. Small databases: From desktop to web server. Sys Admin 11:20-30.

Finelli, C. M., N. D. Pentcheff, R. K. Zimmer-Faust, and D. S. Wethey. 2000. Physical constraints on ecological processes: A field test of odor-mediated foraging. Ecology 81:784-797.

Nevitt, G. A., N. D. Pentcheff, K. J. Lohmann, and R. K. Zimmer. 2000. Den selection by the spiny lobster Panulirus argus: testing attraction to conspecific odors in the field. Marine Ecology Progress Series 203:225-231.

Finelli, C. M., N. D. Pentcheff, R. K. Zimmer-Faust, and D. S. Wethey. 1999. Odor transport in turbulent flows: Constraints on animal navigation. Limnology and Oceanography 44:1057-1071.

Zimmerfaust, R. K., C. M. Finelli, N. D. Pentcheff, and D. S. Wethey. 1995. Odor plumes and animal navigation in turbulent water-flow: a field study. Biological Bulletin 188:111-116.

Lohmann, K. J., N. D. Pentcheff, G. A. Nevitt, G. D. Stetten, R. K. Zimmer-Faust, H. E. Jarrard, and L. C. Boles. 1995. Magnetic orientation of spiny lobsters in the ocean – Experiments with undersea coil systems. Journal of Experimental Biology 198:2041-2048.

Nevitt, G. A., N. D. Pentcheff, K. J. Lohmann, and R. K. Zimmerfaust. 1995. Evidence for hydrodynamic orientation by spiny lobsters in a patch reef environment. Journal of Experimental Biology 198:2049-2054.

Turner, E. J., R. K. Zimmerfaust, M. A. Palmer, M. Luckenbach, and N. D. Pentcheff. 1994 Settlement of oyster (Crassostrea virginica) larvae – Effects of water-flow and a water-soluble chemical cue. Limnology and Oceanography 39:1597-1593.

Pentcheff, N. D. and R. P. Bolender. 1992. Computer-assisted data-collection for stereology – Rationale and description of point counting stereology (PCS) software. Microscopy Research and Technique 21:347-354.

Pentcheff, N. D. 1991. Resistance to crushing from wave-borne debris in the barnacle Balanus glandula. Marine Biology 110:399-408.

Pentcheff, N. D. and R. P. Bolender. 1985. PCS System I – Point counting stereology programs for cell biology. Computer Methods and Programs in Biomedicine 20:173-187.

Selected Published Abstracts

Pentcheff, N. D., C. M. Finelli, D. S. Wethey, and R. K. Zimmer-Faust. 1995. Following odor plumes: How behavior is controlled by the interaction of fluid dynamics with sensory systems. Chemical Senses 20:221.

Pentcheff, N. D. 1989. Filter feeding by barnacles in oscillating flow – Performance consequences of fluid-flow, behavior, and variable cirral morphology. American Zoologist 29:A31.

Pentcheff, N. D. 1987. Resistance to damage from wave-borne debris in populations of the barnacle Semibalanosus cariosus. American Zoologist 27:A165.

Pentcheff, N. D. 1987. Seaweeds in different exposure regimes show differing stipe shapes and material properties. Journal of Biomechanics 20:904.

Pentcheff, N. D., R. S. Cox, and G. Kardon. 1987. Orientation and distribution of chitons in the intertidal. American Zoologist 26:A39.

Cox, R. S., D. J. Eernisse, G. Kardon, and N. D. Pentcheff. 1986. Fluid-dynamics of respiration in the chitons Mopalia muscosa and Mopalia ciliata. American Zoologist 26:A39.

Pentcheff, N. D. and R. P. Bolender. 1984. PCS-II – A point counting stereology program. Anatomical Record 208:A136.


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