Rapid evolutionary change

Changing environmental conditions can cause strong selective pressure, often affecting a variety of critical ecological and life history traits (including species interactions and community structure). This can induce species to evolve rapidly, leading to genetic and phenotypic shifts in a matter of generations. Understanding what genomic mechanisms enable such rapid change, and whether there are fundamental constraints on rapid evolution, are outstanding and highly pressing questions. Our lab combines evolutionary genomics with ecological and phenotypic data to reconstruct rates of trait evolution and to test competing hypotheses about processes underlying rapid evolutionary change.

 Current Projects: Rapid evolution of insecticide resistance in the Colorado potato beetle; Rapid evolution of invasive freshwater fish to predators and pollution in Hawai’i; Community assembly of alpine beetles in western North America