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Prof. Matt Updyke and students discuss their lichen study. | Photo by Bethany Foltz

Matthew Opdyke, Ph.D., associate professor of environmental studies, Laura Frost, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology, and Point Park University biology students Brian Dolney and Joshua Roy, recently had their manuscript "A Study of Epiphytic Lichen Communities in Urban and Rural Environments in Southwestern Pennsylvania" published in the Journal of the Pennsylvania Academy of Science.

The faculty and students studied lichen in Pittsburgh's Schenley and Frick Parks as well as Mingo Creek County Park in Washington County and Roaring Runs Natural Area in Westmoreland County.

They discovered that Mingo Creek County Park and Roaring Runs Natural Area had the most diversity and healthiest of lichens due to its natural space, which suggested that the diversity and growth of lichens is an indicator of air quality.

For more information on the Point Park faculty and students' lichen research study, read the web feature "Prof. Opdyke, Students Research Lichen as Indicator of Air Quality."

Biological sciences with concentrations in environmental science, molecular/cellular and organismal and biotechnology are among the Bachelor of Science degree programs offered at Point Park University, along with a Master of Science degree in environmental studies. To learn more, visit the natural sciences landing page.