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Donald Geiger

Professor Emeritus


College of Arts and Sciences: Biology


Email: Donald Geiger
Phone: 937-426-7852


Donald Geiger, a member of the Marianist religious congregation, began his teaching career in 1955 at Cathedral Latin Secondary School. Since 1964, he has taught in the Department of Biology at the University. His research on photosynthesis, carbon metabolism and transport in plants has been funded by the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. From 1980 to 2001 he served as a research consultant with Monsanto Co., studying translocation of glyphosate (active component of Roundup) and its mode of action in relation to photosynthesis and carbon metabolism. From 1997 to 2001 he has served as consultant and researcher for natural area restoration at the Fernald Nuclear Facility, working with the Department of Energy, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and Fernald Environmental Management Project.

He has taught courses in plant physiology, plant biology, environmental plant biology, ecological restoration, biological instrumentation, radiation biology and global environmental biology in the Department of Biology. Currently, he is a member of the University Honorary Degree Committee. He teaches a course in spring wildflowers for the Life-Long Learning Institute.

Geiger is co-founder of Strategies for Responsible Development at the University of Dayton and was program director from 1974 to 1982 , engaged in research and management of integrated agricultural development in ecologically disturbed areas of West Africa. In 1991, he founded the Marianist Environmental Education Center at Mt. St. John in Greene County and served as director until 2002. The center is engaged in providing educational experience in native and restored ecosystems, particularly at the Mt. St. John nature reserve and native plant resource center. He has contributed a number of articles on ecological restoration topics to restoration and management notes of the Society for Ecological Restoration and the Ohio Woodland Journal.

He serves on the Advisor Board of the Beaver Creek Wetland Association and the Ohio Prairie Association. At present he is developing a management plan for Greene County Parks reserves and working on natural area restoration in the Creekside Reserve. He is a fellow of the Ohio Academy of Science.

Faculty Perspective

I have found the University to be an excellent environment for scholarship, teaching and service as well as a great place to work with students learning to find their way in science professions. Seminars, workshops, participation in service learning and informal exchanges with faculty from throughout the University have made my career both formative and enjoyable. The active search for the meaning of the Marianist, Catholic nature of the University adds a rich texture to my life as a faculty member.


  • Ph.D., The Ohio State University, 1963

Research Interests

My primary research interests are related to whole-plant physiology, with specialization in the areas of regulation of carbon metabolism and translocation, translocation of xenobiotic compounds such as herbicides and other applied chemicals. Over the past two decades our laboratory has pioneered the development of methods for enhancing the effectiveness of glyphosate in the control of invasive woody plants, particularly bush honeysuckle.

Selected Publications

Weber A, JC Servaites, DR Geiger, R Schmidt, H Kofler, D Hille, F Groner, U Hebbeker, "U-I Flugge 2000 Identification, purification and molecular cloning of a plastidic glucose translocator." The Plant Cell. 12:787-801

Geiger DR, MA Fuchs. 2002. "Inhibitors of aromatic amino acid biosynthesis (glphosate)." Herbicide Classes in Development: Mode of Action-Target-Genetic Engineering-Chemistry. Boger PE, K Wakabayashi, K Hirai, Springer-Verlag, Berlin: 59-85

Servaites JC, DR Geiger. 2002. "Kinetic characteristics of chloroplast glucose transport." Journal of Experimental Botany. 53:1-11

Geiger DR, DG Conover, A Wischmeyer, D Brannen, L Jablonski. 2003. "From borrow pit to long-term prairie study site. Proceedings of the 18th North American Prairie Conference. 85-94 S Foré, ed. Truman State University Press, Kirksville, MO.