Mohamed A. F. Noor

Professor of Biology

130 Science Drive, Room 137, Duke Box 90338, Durham, NC 27708
Campus Box: 
Duke Box 90338, Biology Department, Durham, NC 27708-4129
(919) 613-8156
Research in my laboratory strives to understand what genetic changes contribute to the formation of new species, and how the process of genetic recombination affects both species formation and molecular evolution. I've been fascinated at how often genetic recombination plays a major role in any evolutionary genetic question I seek to pursue, so understanding its causes and effects has become a thread uniting the dissertations of most people in the laboratory. Our approaches combine classical genetic, molecular genetic, and genomic/ bioinformatic analyses, along with occasional forays into areas like animal behavior (in relation to speciation). I am also very interested in helping develop educational activities (K-12 or college) in genetics and evolution. See my lab webpage for more detailed information:


  • Ph.D., University of Chicago 1996

  • B.S., College of William and Mary 1992

Noor, MAF. You're Hired! Now What?. Sinauer Associates Incorporated, January 1, 2012.

McDermott, S, and Noor, M. "Hybrid Sterility." In Brenner's Encyclopedia of Genetics: Second Edition, 579-581. February 27, 2013. Full Text

Ballinger, MA, and Noor, MAF. "Are Lethal Alleles Too Abundant in Humans?." Trends in Genetics : Tig 34, no. 2 (February 2018): 87-89. Full Text

Ravinet, M, Faria, R, Butlin, RK, Galindo, J, Bierne, N, Rafajlović, M, Noor, MAF, Mehlig, B, and Westram, AM. "Interpreting the genomic landscape of speciation: a road map for finding barriers to gene flow." Journal of Evolutionary Biology 30, no. 8 (August 2017): 1450-1477. (Review) Full Text

Ritz, KR, Noor, MAF, and Singh, ND. "Variation in Recombination Rate: Adaptive or Not?." Trends in Genetics : Tig 33, no. 5 (May 2017): 364-374. (Review) Full Text

Manzano-Winkler, B, Hish, AJ, Aarons, EK, and Noor, MAF. "Reproductive interference by male Drosophila subobscura on female D. persimilis: A laboratory experiment." Ecology and Evolution 7, no. 7 (April 2017): 2268-2272. Full Text

Mittleman, BE, Manzano-Winkler, B, Hall, JB, Korunes, KL, and Noor, MAF. "The large X-effect on secondary sexual characters and the genetics of variation in sex comb tooth number in Drosophila subobscura." Ecology and Evolution 7, no. 2 (January 2017): 533-540. Full Text

Noor, MAF. "The (R)Evolution is here!." Evolution; international journal of organic evolution 71, no. 1 (January 2017): 4-5. Full Text

Korunes, KL, and Noor, MAF. "Gene conversion and linkage: effects on genome evolution and speciation." Molecular ecology 26, no. 1 (January 2017): 351-364. Full Text

Smukowski Heil, CS, Ellison, C, Dubin, M, and Noor, MAF. "Recombining without Hotspots: A Comprehensive Evolutionary Portrait of Recombination in Two Closely Related Species of Drosophila." Genome Biology and Evolution 7, no. 10 (October 2015): 2829-2842. Full Text


Selected Grants

Collaborative Research: Reversing evolution to understand the genetic basis of species divergence awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2018 to 2021

Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Training Program awarded by National Institutes of Health (Mentor). 2005 to 2021

Genetics Training Grant awarded by National Institutes of Health (Mentor). 1979 to 2020

SG: An experimental test of the role of chromosomal inversions in adaptive evolution awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2018 to 2020

EAGER: Test for local adaptation of recombination rate awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2015 to 2019

Fine-scale Recombination, Variation, Divergence, and Codon Bias in Drosophila awarded by National Institutes of Health (Principal Investigator). 2009 to 2015

DISSERTATION RESEARCH: The Role of Mating System in Sperm Competition and Protein Evolution in /Agelaius/ Blackbirds awarded by National Science Foundation (Co-Principal Investigator). 2011 to 2014

DISSERTATION RESEARCH: The Epigenetic Regulation of Meiotic Recombination awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2012 to 2014

Workshop for Graduate Students on Communicating Science awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2012