Douglas J. Eernisse

Skip to Publications

Department of Biological Science
California State University
Fullerton, CA 92834-6850 USA
Voice: (657) 278-3749
FAX: (657) 278-3426
Email: deernisse @


1984, Ph.D. Biology, University of California, Santa Cruz

1977, B.A. Zoology, University of Washington


Calif. State Univ. Fullerton, Principles of Evolution, Evolution, Genes and Genomes, Evolutionary Pathways, Marine Phylogeography, Computer Lab in Molecular Systematics, Field Marine Biology, Marine Biology for Nonmajors, Honors Seminar on History of Life, for Non-Science Majors, Teaching Evolution: Online Course for Teachers, Phylogeography of Baja California, Principles of Zoology, Biosystematics, Biology for Nonmajors, 1994-present; Univ. of Michigan, Biology of Invertebrates, Biology for Nonscientists, Majors Biology, 1986-1994; Univ. of Michigan Graduate courses led: Topics in Metazoan Phylogeny, Topics in Molluscan Systematics; Woods Hole Marine Biological Lab., Instructor, Molecular Evolution Workshop, 1992, 1993, 1995, 1997; Univ. of Californa, Santa Cruz, Visiting Lecturer, Intertidal Biology, Spring, 1984, and TA, 1978-1983, Friday Harbor Laboratories, Univ. of Washington, Teaching Assistant, Marine Invertebrate Embryology, 1981


Professor, California State University, 2005-present
Associate Professor, California State University, 1998-2005
Assistant Professor, California State University, 1994-1998
Visiting Scientist, Lab of Molec. System., Smithsonian Inst., Washington, D.C., 1994
Assist. Prof. and Assist. Curator, Dept. Biol. and Mus. Zool., Univ. Michigan, 1986-1993
NSF Postdoctoral Associate, University of Washington, Friday Harbor Labs, 1985-1986
Friday Harbor Labs Postdoctoral Associate, University of Washington, 1984
Visiting Lecturer, University of California, Santa Cruz, 1984

Professional Service

Member of Council, Society of Systematic Biologists, 1998-2002
Editorial Board, Zoomorphology, 2004-present
Editorial Board, Evolution: Education and Outreach, 2007-present
Editorial Board, Festivus, 1993-present
Editor, Western Society of Malacologists Annual Report, 2000-2005
Associate Editor, Malacological Review, 1986-1993 (Vols. 19-26)
Associate Editor, Prosobranch Phylogeny, Malacological Review, Suppl. 4, 1988
Fellow, Willi Hennig Society, 1992-present
Advisory Panel, National Science Foundation, 1994-1996
Bioinformatics Advisory Board Member, CSU Fullerton, 2001-present
NCBI GenBank Taxwork consultant, 1994-1995
Research Associate in Malacology, Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History

President, American Malacological Society, 2009-2010
Chair, Nominating Committee, American Malacological Society, 2010-present

Recent Awards and Honors

Eernisse, D. J. (PI), Oakley, T. H. (Co-PI), and Speiser, D. I. (Co-PI). Collaborative Research: RUI: Timing and Molecular Origins of Recently Evolved Chiton Shell-Eyes: Phylogenomics of Chitonina. National Science Foundation grant, 2014-2017 (DEB - 1355230).
Sabbatical Scholar Fellowship, NESCent, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina (2006-2007)
Honored in naming of Loricella eernissei Sirenko, 2008 (Recent, New Caledonia) and Craspedochiton eernissei Dell'Angelo et al. 2011 (Eocene, western Washington)

Selected Publications
(See also Google Scholar Profile for "Douglas J. Eernisse")

Scuderi, D. and D. J. Eernisse. 2016. A new alien limpet for the Mediterranean: Lottia sp.(Patellogastropoda: Lottiidae). Biodiversity Journal 7: 287-293. (pdf)

McClain, C. R., J. P. Barry, D. Eernisse, T. Horton, J. Judge, K. Kakui, C. Mah, and A. Warén. 2016. Multiple processes generate productivity-diversity relationships in experimental wood-fall communities. Ecology 97: 885-898.

Peterson, K. J. and D. J. Eernisse. 2016. The phylogeny, evolutionary developmental biology, and paleobiology of the Deuterostomia: 25 years of new techniques, new discoveries and new ideas. Organisms Diversity and Evolution 16: 401-418. (pdf)

Raith, M., D. C. Zacherl, E. M. Pilgrim, and D. J. Eernisse. 2016. Phylogeny and species diversity of Gulf of California oysters (Ostreidae) inferred from mitochondrial DNA. American Malacological Bulletin, 33: 263-283. (pdf)

Irisarri, I., D. J. Eernisse, and R. Zardoya. 2014. Molecular phylogeny of Acanthochitonina (Mollusca: Polyplacophora: Chitonida): three new mitochondrial genomes, rearranged gene orders and systematics. Journal of Natural History, 48: 2825-2853.

Smith, J. R., S. C. Vogt, F. Creedon, B. Lucas, and D. J. Eernisse. 2014. The non-native turf-forming alga Caulacanthus ustulatus displaces space-occupants but increases diversity. Biological Invasions 16: 2195-2208. (pdf)

Gilbertson, L. H., D. J. Eernisse, and J. K. Wallace. 2013. A new dartless species of Cahuillus (Pulmonata: Helminthoglyptidae) from the Mojave Desert, California with a reassignment of Eremarionta rowelli unifasciata. American Malacological Bulletin 31: 57-64. (pdf)

Vendrasco, M. J., D. J. Eernisse, C. L. Powell, II, and C. Z. Fernandez. 2012. Polyplacophora (Mollusca) from the San Diego Formation: A remarkable assemblage of fossil chitons from the Pliocene of southern California. Contributions in Science, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County 520: 15-72 - or here

Speiser, D. I., D. J. Eernisse, and S. Johnsen. 2011. A chiton uses aragonite lenses to form images. Current Biology - 21: 665-670.

Eernisse, D.J., M. F. Strathmann, and R. R. Strathmann. 2010. Henricia pumila sp. nov.: A brooding seastar (Asteroidea) from the coastal northeastern Pacific. Zootaxa, 2329: 22-36 (open access).

S&E_CoverStebbins, T. D. and D. J. Eernisse. 2009. Chitons (Mollusca, Polyplacophora) known from benthic monitoring programs in the Southern California Bight. Festivus (Special Issue) 41(6): 53-100 (pdf 2 mb or high resol. pdf 24 mb)

Puchalski, S. S., C. C. Johnson, E. G. Kauffman, and D. J. Eernisse. 2009. A new genus and two new species of multiplacophorans (Mollusca, Polyplacophora, Neoloricata), Mississippian (Chesterian), Indiana. Journal of Paleontology 83: 423-431. (high resol. pdf 10 mb)

Polson, M. P., W. E. Hewson, D. J. Eernisse, P. K. Baker, and D. C. Zacherl. 2009. You say conchaphila, I say lurida: Molecular evidence for restricting the Olympia oyster to temperate western North America. Journal of Shellfish Research 28: 1-11. (pdf)

Serb, J. M. and D. J. Eernisse. 2008. Charting evolution’s trajectory: Using molluscan eye diversity to understand parallel and convergent evolution. Evolution: Education and Outreach 1(4):439-447. (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J. 2008. Introduction to the symposium “Advances in Chiton Research”. American Malacological Bulletin 25: 21-24 (pdf)

Vendrasco, M. J., C. Z. Fernandez, D. J. Eernisse, and B. Runnegar. 2008. Aesthete canal morphology in the Mopaliidae (Polyplacophora). American Malacological Bulletin 25: 51-70 (pdf)

Puchalski, S. S., D. J. Eernisse, and C. C. Johnson. 2008. The effect of sampling bias on the fossil record of chitons (Mollusca, Polyplacophora). American Malacological Bulletin 25: 87-96 (pdf) (database here)

Kelly, R. P. and D. J. Eernisse. 2008. Reconstructing a radiation: The chiton genus Mopalia in the north Pacific. Invertebrate Systematics 22:1-12. (request pdf by email)

tidepoolsEernisse, D. J. 2007. Chitons. Pp. 127-133, in: Encyclopedia of Tidepools and Rocky Shores. M. W. Denny and S. D. Gaines (Eds.) University of California Press, Berkeley, California. (pdf)

LM_coverEernisse, D. J., R. N. Clark, and A. Draeger. 2007. Polyplacophora. Pp. 701-713, in: Light and Smith Manual: Intertidal Invertebrates from Central California to Oregon, 4th Ed. J. T. Carlton (Ed.). University of California Press, Berkeley, California (pdf)

Kelly, R. P., and D. J. Eernisse. 2007. Southern hospitality: A latitudinal gradient in gene flow in the marine environment. Evolution, 61: 700-707 (pdf)

Kelly. R. P., I. N. Sarkar, D. J. Eernisse, and R. Desalle. 2007. DNA barcoding using chitons (genus Mopalia). Molecular Ecology Notes, 7: 177-183 (pdf)

Crummett, L. T. and D. J. Eernisse. 2007. Genetic evidence for the cryptic species pair, Lottia digitalis and Lottia austrodigitalis and microhabitat partitioning in sympatry. Marine Biology, 152: 1-13 (pdf)

tol_cover Eernisse, D. J. and K. J. Peterson, 2004. Chapter 13: The history of animals. Pp. 197-208, in (Cracraft, J. and M. J. Donoghue, eds.) Assembling the Tree of Life. Oxford University Press, New York. (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J. 2004. Foreward to Systematics, Phylogeny and Biology of Polyplacophora: Proceedings to the 4th International Workshop of Malacology held in Menfi, Sicily (14-18 June 2001) Istituzione Culturale Federico II. Bollettino Malacologico 40: i-iv (pdf)

Okusu, A., E. Schwabe, D. J. Eernisse, and G. Giribet. 2003. Towards a phylogeny of chitons (Mollusca: Polyplacophora) based on combined analysis of five molecular loci. Organisms Diversity & Evolution 3(4): 281-302 (pdf)

Pojeta, J. Jr., D. J. Eernisse, R. D. Hoare, and M. D. Henderson. 2003. Echinochiton dufoei: A new spiny Ordovician chiton. Journal of Paleontology 77: 646-654 (pdf)

Eernisse, D.J. 2003. A more colorful invertebrates text. Bioscience 53(8): 774-776 [Book review of Invertebrates 2nd Ed. by Brusca and Brusca] (pdf)

Peterson, K. J. and D. J. Eernisse, 2001. Animal phylogeny and the ancestry of bilaterians: Inferences from morphology and 18S rDNA gene sequences. Evolution and Development 3(3): 1-35 (pdf)

Eernisse, 2000. DNA Stacks software package for molecular systematics, version 1.3. Available at:

Eernisse, D. J. 1998b. A brief guide to phylogenetic software. Trends in Genetics 14(11), 473-475 (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J. 1998a. Class Polyplacophora. Pp. 49-73, in: Taxonomic Atlas of the Benthic Fauna of the Santa Maria Basin and the Western Santa Barbara Channel, Volume 8. The Mollusca, Part 1: Aplacophora, Polyplacophora, Scaphopoda, Bivalvia and Cephalopoda (P. Valentich Scott and J.A. Blake, eds.). Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, Santa Barbara, California.

Eernisse, D. J. 1997b. Arthropod and annelid relationships re-examined. Pp. 43-56, in: Arthropod Relationships (R.A. Fortey and R.H. Thomas, eds.). The Systematics Association and Chapman and Hall, London.

Eernisse, D. J. 1997a. Review of Origin and Evolutionary Radiation of the Mollusca (J.D. Taylor, Ed.). Quarterly Review of Biology, 72:79 (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J. 1995b. Molecular and classical taxonomy workshop. Cahiers de la Fondation des Treilles, Annee' 1994: 55-73.

Eernisse, D. J. 1995a. Molecular and classical taxonomy workshop at Tourtour, France, November, 1994. J. Europ. Sci. Found. 32: 24-25.

Eernisse, D. J., and P. D. Reynolds. 1994. Chapter 3. Polyplacophora. Pp. 56-110 in Microscopic Anatomy of Invertebrates, Volume 5, Mollusca 1 (F. W. Harrison and A. J. Kohn, eds.). Wiley-Liss, New York. (pdf)

Strathmann, R. R., and D. J. Eernisse. 1994. What molecular phylogenies tell us about evolution of larval morphology. American Zoologist 34: 502-512 (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J., and A. G. Kluge. 1993. Taxonomic congruence versus total evidence, and the phylogeny of amniotes inferred from fossils, molecules and morphology. Molecular Biology and Evolution 10: 1170-1195 (pdf)

Buckland-Nicks, J.A., and D. J. Eernisse. 1993. Ultrastructure of mature sperm and eggs of the brooding hermaphroditic chiton, Lepidochitona fernaldi Eernisse, 1986, with observations on the mechanism of fertilization. Journal of Experimental Zoology 265: 567-574 (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J., J. S. Albert & F. E. Anderson. 1992. Annelida and Arthropoda are not sister taxa: A phylogenetic analysis of spiralian metazoan morphology. Systematic Biology 41(3): 305-330 (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J. 1992. DNA Translator and Aligner: HyperCard utilities to aid phylogenetic analysis of molecules. CABIOS 8:177-184 (pdf) [See above]

Eernisse, D. J. 1990. DNA Translator: a HyperCard stack for molecular systematics. 1991. Aligner: a HyperCard stack for manual sequence alignment. Published electronically, available via anonymous ftp to Ftp.Bio.Indiana.Edu.

Eernisse, D. J. 1988. Reproductive patterns in six species of Lepidochitona (Mollusca: Polyplacophora) from the Pacific Coast of North America. Biological Bulletin 174: 287-302 (pdf)

O'Foighil, D. and D. J. Eernisse. 1988. Geographically widespread, non-hybridizing, sympatric strains of the hermaphroditic, brooding clam Lasaea in the northeastern Pacific Ocean. Biological Bulletin 175: 218-229 (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J. and K. Kerth. 1988. The initial stages of radular formation in chitons (Mollusca: Polyplacophora). Malacologia 28: 95-103 (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J., N. B. Terwilliger, and R. C. Terwilliger. 1988. The red foot of a lepidopleurid chiton: Evidence for tissue hemoglobins. Veliger 30: 244-247 (pdf)

Strathmann, M. and D. J. Eernisse. 1987. Phylum Mollusca, Class Polyplacophora. Pp. 205-219 in The Friday Harbor Labs Handbook of Marine Invertebrate Embryology. Univ. of Wash. Press, Seattle.

O'Foighil, D. and D. J. Eernisse. 1987. Phosphoglucomutase allozyme evidence for an outcrossing mode of reproduction in the hermaphroditic brooding bivalve Mysella tumida (Galeommatacea). J. Molluscan Studies 53: 223-228 (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J. 1986. The genus Lepidochitona Gray, 1821 (Mollusca: Polyplacophora) in the northeastern Pacific Ocean (Oregonian and Californian Provinces). Zool. Verh. (Leiden) 228: 3-52 (pdf)

Pearse, J. S., D. J. Eernisse, V. B. Pearse, and K. A. Beauchamp. 1986. Photoperiodic regulation of gametogenesis in sea stars, with evidence for an annual calendar independent of fixed daylength. Amer. Zool. 26: 417-431 (pdf)

Eernisse, D. J. 1984. Lepidochitona Gray, 1821 (Mollusca: Polyplacophora), from the Pacific Coast of the United States: Systematics and Reproduction. Ph.D. Dissertation. 358 pp. University of California, Santa Cruz.

J. S. Pearse and D. J. Eernisse. 1982. Photoperiodic regulation of gametogenesis and gonadal growth in the sea star Pisaster ochraceus. Mar. Biol. 67: 121-125 (pdf)

Send mail to deernisse @

csufbio_logo Return to Doug Eernisse's Home Page