Jan Degan MS, RN

Director of Research

Desert Blonde Tarantula - Aphonopelma chalcodes
  • Photo by Jerry Schudda

    Desert Blonde Tarantula – Aphonopelma chalcodes

    This large spider was given the name “blonde” due to the pale to tan hairs on its cephalothorax, which contrast with its usually darker legs and abdomen. Although venomous, this spider is generally considered to be docile and its bite is nearly harmless to humans. The barbed hairs on its cephalothorax, however, can prove to be a potent irritant when provoked.

    These urticating hairs are commonly collected in the clothes and hands of people who handle the spider and subsequently can be rubbed into the skin or mucous membranes. If inhaled, these hairs can cause symptoms similar to an asthma attack with swelling of the airway requiring hospitalization.

As VIPER’s Director of Research, Jan has served the VIPER Institute in several research roles. She has been an integral part of several clinical trials, developing clinical research protocols, overseeing study patient/participants in clinical trials, and working with study site personnel.  As Director of Research, Degan reports to the Director and applies a broad knowledge of clinical research activity, clinical knowledge, and regulatory acumen to facilitate the development and implementation of VIPER’s projects.  She reviews methodologies for clinical investigations and assembles the team to produce the highest quality data.  Following clinical trial completion, she assists in study closure and preparation for publication. 


VIPER Projects