Genomics is the study of the complete set of DNA of an organism, including its sequence, organization, function, and evolution. The study of genomics incorporates a wide variety of experimental, computational, and statistical methodologies and has been greatly accelerated in recent years with the advent of next-generation sequencing technologies, high-density molecular assays (e.g. microarrays, droplet PCR), and advances in computational biology and biostatistics. Genomic research within the Department of Biology spans a wide range of subdisciplines including functional genomics, population and evolutionary genomics, and developmental genomics.

Daniele Armaleo

Associate Professor of the Practice of Biology

My research centers on the developmental and molecular biology of lichens, well differentiated symbioses between two or three evolutionarily unrelated organisms: specialized fungi on the one hand and algae or cyanobacteria on the other. The 13,500 known lichen species represent 50% of all known ascomycete fungi, are widespread throughout most terrestrial ecosystems, and often... Full Profile »

L. Ryan Baugh

Associate Professor of Biology

We study nutritional control of development in the roundworm Caenorhabditis elegans. We are interested in the signaling pathways and gene regulatory mechanisms that enable the worm to reversibly arrest development and resist stress in response to starvation. We are also investigating epigenetic mechanisms responsible for transgenerational effects of starvation. Full Profile »

Philip N. Benfey

Paul Kramer Professor of Biology in Trinity College of Arts and Sciences

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Xinnian Dong

Arts and Sciences Professor of Biology in the Trinity College of Arts and Sciences

Using Arabidopsis thaliana as a model system, my laboratory studies the mechanisms of plant defense against microbial pathogens. We focus on a specific response known as systemic acquired resistance (SAR). SAR, which can be induced by a local infection, provides the plants with long lasting, systemic resistance against a broad spectrum of pathogens. Salicylic acid (SA; an... Full Profile »

Steven B. Haase

Associate Professor of Biology

In order to divide, cells must first duplicate their entire contents, and then segregate the duplicated contents equally into two daughter cells. The duplication and segregation events of the cell division cycle must be triggered in a strict temporal order to insure that each new daughter cell is identical to the original mother cell. Using the budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, as a model system, we are investigating the role of a highly conserved family of cell cycle regulatory... Full Profile »

Daniel P. Kiehart

Professor of Biology

Our intellectual focus is on identifying determinants of cell shape that function during development and wound healing. We utilize novel biophysical strategies (in collaboration with Glenn Edwards' group in Physics and with Stephanos Venakide's and John Harer's groups in Mathematics) in concert with modern molecular genetic and reverse genetic approaches in Drosophila to explore the forces that are responsible for cell shape change and movements. We show that both the amnioserosa and a... Full Profile »

Paul Mitaari Magwene

Associate Professor of Biology

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Thomas Mitchell-Olds

Newman Ivey White Professor of Biology in Trinity College of Arts and Sciences

We study genetic variation in plant populations, focusing on genes that influence traits controlling plant performance in an environmental context – a central theme throughout our research in natural and agricultural populations. Much of our work is focused on the genes that affect ecological success and evolutionary fitness in natural environments. Similarly, the interaction of crop plants with their biotic and abiotic environments is controlled by complex trait variation which can be... Full Profile »

Mohamed A. F. Noor

Professor of Biology

One of the greatest unsolved questions in biology is how continuous processes of evolutionary change produce the discontinuous groups known as species. For a many years, my team studied hybrid sterility and behavioral mate preferences using classical, QTL-based, or molecular genetic approaches on Drosophila species as model organisms. More recently, the availability of multiple whole-genome sequences (some public but especially those we have obtained ourselves) has dramatically enhanced the... Full Profile »

Zhen-Ming Pei

Associate Professor of Biology

My laboratory is interested in the early signaling events by which plants sense environmental signals and decode to give the appropriate responses. Upon perception of external signals, cell surface receptors trigger an increase in cytosolic free calcium concentration, which is mediated by ion channels. Our long-term goals are to identify these receptors and ion channels, isolate their interacting components, and assign molecular functions to them. Currently, we are using multidisciplinary... Full Profile »

Allen G Rodrigo

Adjunct Professor of Biology

My research focuses on evolutionary bioinformatics and computatioanl biology. In particular, I am interested in the development of novel methods to study the evolution of genes, genomes, organisms and species. Full Profile »

Amy K. Schmid

Assistant Professor of Biology

Although life science research has entered the post-genomic era, we still understand little about the diversity of microbial life on earth. Information is particularly lacking on microbial extremophiles, which thrive at the limits of life. Extremophiles can be found in deep-sea hydrothermal vents under high pressure and temperature, saturated salt lakes, and polar icecaps. Many of these organisms are members of the third domain of life, the archaea. How do these microorganisms cope with an... Full Profile »

Marcy K. Uyenoyama

Professor of Biology

Marcy Uyenoyama studies mechanisms of evolutionary change at the molecular and population levels. Among the questions under study include the prediction and detection of the effects of natural selection on genomic structure. A major area of research addresses the development of maximum-likelihood and Bayesian methods for inferring evolutionary processes from the pattern of molecular variation. Evolutionary processes currently under study include characterization of population structure... Full Profile »

Huntington Faxon Willard

Adjunct Professor in the Department of Biology

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John H. Willis

Professor of Biology

We conduct research on broad issues in evolutionary genetics, and we are currently addressing questions relating to the evolution of adaptation, reproductive isolation, breeding systems, inbreeding depression, and floral traits in natural plant populations. Please see our lab web page for more information. Full Profile »

Gregory Allan Wray

Professor of Biology

I study the evolution of genes and genomes with the broad aim of understanding the origins of biological diversity. My approach focuses on changes in the expression of genes using both empirical and computational approaches and spans scales of biological organization from single nucleotides through gene networks to entire genomes. At the finer end of this spectrum of scale, I am focusing on understanding the functional consequences and fitness components of specific genetic variants within... Full Profile »