Paul Craig

Paul Craig
Associate Professor
Location: B1 178A
Phone: 519-888-4567 x32035


Dr. Paul Craig's current research focuses on abiotic factors associated with climate change (temperature/hypoxia) in combination with emerging organic pollutants (pharmaceuticals), which have been demonstrated to target numerous fish species.

A unique and novel aspect of Dr. Craig's research is examining the epigenetic mechanisms driving the altered phenotypes found in teleosts exposed to multiple stressors. Epigenetics is defined by examining the inheritance of variation beyond changes in DNA sequence. Epigenetic regulation, through DNA methylation, histone modification, and non-coding RNA may profoundly alter transcriptional and translational effects of gene expression, and it is now clear that these mechanisms are influenced by environmental stressors, both natural and anthropogenic, acting as the interface between the genome and the environment.

Dr. Craig uses a number of different techniques to address these questions, including next-generation sequencing, qPCR and microarray analysis, cell culture, protein abundance and enzymatic activity, cell respiration and reactive oxygen species production, and measurements of whole animal metabolism and performance.

Active research themes in the Craig Lab:

*The role of epigenetic regulation on phenotypic responses to environmental stressors in teleosts

*Studies here involve the profiling of epigenetic responses (DNA methylation, microRNA) in zebrafish and rainbow trout to environmental stressors and how they dictate the phenotypic response. Transgenerational epigenetic responses to environmental stressors

*Studies here examine the heritability of epigenetic mechanism from paternal and maternal sources, both intra- and inter-generationally, in teleosts. Application of epigenetic profiling to local species and conditions

*Studies here build upon Themes 1 & 2 and apply epigenetic profiling in local fish species found along the Grand River in effort to predict future responses to emerging organic contaminant threats.

Research Interests

  • Comparative and environmental animal physiology
  • Phenotypic responses to multiple environmental stressors
  • Molecular and epigenetic analysis, including microRNA and methylation profiling
  • Energetics and metabolism
  • Bioinformatics, Systematics and Evolution
  • Ecology and Environmental Biology
  • Physiology, Cell and Developmental Biology
  • Climate Extremes and Food Production


  • 2014, Postdoctoral Fellowship Postdoctoral Fellowship, University of Ottawa, Canada
  • 2009 Ph.D. Comparative Physiology, McMaster University, Canada
  • 2004 M.Sc. Comparative Physiology, University of Guelph, Canada
  • 2001 B.Sc. Zoology, University of Guelph, Canada


  • 2019 Ontario Early Researcher Award
  • 2018 University of Waterloo Outstanding Performance Award.


  • Chair, Animal Care Committee
  • Co-Organizer of the Biology Seminar Series
  • Biology Executive Committee Member
  • Journal Editorships: International Editorial Board; Comparative Biochemistry & Physiology; Review Editor for Animal Physiology Section; Reference Module in Life Sciences

Professional Associations

  • Canadian Society of Zoologist
  • Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry
  • American Physiological Society
  • Society of Experimental Biology

Affiliations and Volunteer Work

  • Adjunct; Department of Biology, Trent University
  • Member of The Water Institute, University of Waterloo


  • BIOL 110 - Introductory Zoology
    • Taught in 2023
  • BIOL 370 - Comparative Animal Physiology: Environmental Aspects
    • Taught in 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021
  • BIOL 477L - Techniques in Animal Physiology
    • Taught in 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022
  • BIOL 605 - Environmental Animal Physiology
    • Taught in 2018, 2020

* Only courses taught in the past 5 years are displayed.

Selected/Recent Publications

  • Ikert H*, Lynch MDJ, Doxey AC, Giesy JP, Servos MR, Katzenback BA, Craig PM. (2021). High throughput sequencing of microRNA in rainbow trout plasma, mucous, and surround water following acute stress. Frontiers in Physiology: Aquatic Physiology. 11:588313
  • Ikert H*, Craig PM. (2020). Chronic Exposure to Venlafaxine and Increased Water Temperature ReversiblyAlters microRNA in Zebrafish Gonads (Danio Rerio). Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part D:Genomics and Proteomics. 33:100634
  • Luu I*, Ikert H*, Craig PM. (2020). Chronic exposure to anthropogenic and climate related stressors alters transcriptional responses in the liver of zebrafish (Danio rerio) across multiple generations. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology C: Toxicology & Pharmacology. 240:108918
  • Cadonic IG*, Ikert H*, Craig PM. (2020). Acute Air Exposure Modulates the microRNA Abundance in Stress Responsive Tissues and Circulating Extracellular Vesicles in Rainbow Trout (Oncorhynchus Mykiss). Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part D: Genomics and Proteomics. 34:100661
  • Lobb B, Hodgson R*, Lynch MDJ, Mansfield MJ, Cheng J, Charles TC, Neufeld JD, Craig PM, Doxey AC.(2020). Time Series Resolution of the Fish Necrobiome Reveals a Decomposer Succession Involving Toxigenic Bacterial Pathogens. mSystems. 5:e00145-20
  • Hodgson R*, Servos MR, Craig PM. (2020). Impacts on metabolism and gill physiology of darter species(Etheostoma spp.) attributed to wastewater effluent in the Grand River. Special Issue " Emerging effects of pollutants in the aquatic environment"; Applied Sciences. 10:8364
  • Bennoit NR*, Craig PM. (2020). Increased metabolic rate associated with immune stimulation with heat-killed Vibrio anguillarum at different temperatures in zebrafish (Danio rerio). Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part B: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.250:110489
  • Note: Asterisks denotes students from Paul Craig's lab. Please see his Google Scholar profile for a current list of his peer-reviewed articles:

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