Dr. John M. Kenney

Associate Professor

Office Location: Howell E310
Telephone: (252) 328-2028
Email: kenneyj@ecu.edu

PhD in Physics, University of New York at Stony Brook, 1985


  • Circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy
  • Spider silk

Research Projects

My research consists of applying physical techniques, e.g., circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, to biomolecular systems, primarily amyloid-like structures; e.g., spider silk, alpha-synuclein (associated with Parkinson’s disease), and PAI-1 serpins. Spider silk is of particular interest and my “Amyloidogenic nature of spider silk” (European J Biochem 269, 4159-4163 2002) demonstrating that the molecular mechanism of fibril formation of spider silk is similar to that of amyloids has generated a wide research interest (it has been cited 22 times as of July 2006). Various students have worked in my lab on spider silk related projects. These studies require the development and use a broad application of different imaging and spectroscopic techniques, principally transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and more recently synchrotron radiation circular dichroism (SR-CD).

Courses Taught

  • PHYS 1080 Physics and the Universe
  • PHYS 2350 University Physics I
  • PHYS 2360 University Physics II
  • PHYS 4610 Electronics
  • PHYS 5600 Modern Electronics