I am an NIH-funded post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Anthropology at Penn State University. My research aims to understand how organisms adapt to their environment with a focus on the evolution of complex, polygenic traits. To do so, I use population, evolutionary, and functional genomic approaches to understand the effects of past selection on modern medically-relevant phenotypes, testing evolutionary hypotheses in humans, non-human primates, and disease vectors. More broadly, I want to understand how ecological, behavioral, cultural, or anthropogenic factors impact adaptive evolution.
I am affiliated with:
- Dr. George Perry’s Anthropological Genomics Laboratory,
- the Penn State Department of Anthropology, and
- the Penn State Department of Biology,
My current major project uses genomic techniques to investigate human adaptations to life in the rainforests of Africa, including the evolution of small body size (the “pygmy” phenotype) in rainforest hunter-gatherers. Previously, after receiving my Ph.D. from New York University, I served as a post-doctoral researcher with Dr. Nora Besansky at Notre Dame, working on mosquito population genetics.