Molecular evolution and endocrinology

Research Interests

An important goal in molecular evolution is to illucidate how proteins evolved to perform their current biological functions, and to determine the mechanisms by which proteins diversify and co-evolve following gene duplication or speciation events. I study the evolution of endocrine signaling in metazoans using phylogenetics, ancestral protein reconstruction and tissue culture assays to explore the evolution of endocrine receptor/ hormone specificity. By combining gene family evolution with functional and manipulative experiments, I hope to reveal the mechanisms by which endocrine signaling complexes evolved, and learn more broadly about how new protein interactions are formed and maintained.

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