U professor changesfocus of research

The five-legged frog business isn’t what it used to be, and it’s losing one of its most prominent researchers.
University biology professor Robert McKinnell said Wednesday he will stop researching deformed frogs after his contract with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency expires this year.
“It’s a problem that could swallow up all of a researcher’s time,” said Ralph Pribble, an information officer at the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. “So I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s what he was feeling.”
McKinnell, who has been working with cancerous frogs since 1958, was recruited to study the malformed amphibians in 1995 after they were discovered in southern Minnesota.
“I’m not in the least saying that abnormal frogs are not important — no way,” McKinnell said. “But I only have limited time, and I happen to be more interested in cancer than I am in environmental issues at the current time.”
McKinnell said he will also continue his work in cloning frogs.
Pribble stressed the pollution control agency researchers would miss working with McKinnell.
— Colleen Winters