Genetic Basis of Human Morphological Evolution

A major focus of the lab is working to identify the developmental genetic mechanisms that underlie human morphological traits, particularly the mechanisms that underlie human reproduction and brain evolution.

Projects currently include:

  • Evolution of gene expression in the primate brain, focused on identifying and characterizing genes that evolved new expression patterns in the human lineage.
  • Evolution of female reproductive traits, including the molecular and genetic mechanisms that mediate maternal-fetal interactions, gestation length, and preterm birth.
  • Evolution of testis/sperm chromatin binding proteins in primates, focused on the functional evolution of testis- and sperm-specific histones in the human lineage.

Human Brain Evolution