Genomic research sheds light on how various organisms and lifestyles evolved and how they are adapting to changing conditions today.
Much of the research in this lab focuses on sequencing (or mapping) DNA strands in the chromosomes and mitochondria of Lepidoptera. Researchers also sequence RNA, proteins and entire nuclear and mitochondrial genomes. Today, considerable research on the nature of life and relationships between organisms occurs at the molecular level. For example, scientists here study molecular patterns to reconstruct the evolutionary history of butterflies and moths and to help identify newly discovered species. Other genetic studies explore how parts of the Lepidoptera genome controls behavior, development and morphology. More than 15 students regularly use this lab.