February 2023, VBI Scientist of the Month, Kenneth Catania, Ph.D.
Kenneth Catania, Ph.D.
Stevenson Professor of Biological Sciences
A neuroscientist by training, Ken Catania has spent much of his career investigating the unusual brains and behaviors of specialized animals. These have included star-nosed moles, tentacled snakes, water shrews, alligators, crocodiles, electric eels, and parasitoid wasps. His studies often focus on predators that have evolved special senses and weapons to find and overcome elusive prey. He studies specialized species to reveal general principles about brain organization and sensory systems. Catania was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2006, a Guggenheim Fellow in 2014, and in 2013 he received the Pradel Research Award in Neurosciences from the National Academy of Sciences. Catania received a BS in zoology from the University of Maryland (1989), a Ph.D. (1994) in neurosciences from the University of California, San Diego, and is currently a Stevenson Professor of Biological Sciences at Vanderbilt University.