FACULTY

Rasmus Nielsen (He/His)
Department of Integrative Biology
4098 Valley Life Sciences Building (VLSB)
Berkeley, CA 94720-3140
Phone: (510) 643-4993
Email: rasmus_nielsen@berkeley.edu

 

 
 
 

Sandra Hui (They/Them)
As a student in the Computational Biology graduate group, I’m interested in method development for studying tumor evolution using single cell whole genome sequencing, from a population genetics perspective.
Email: sandra_hui@berkeley.edu

 
 
 
 
 

Aaron Stern (He/Him)
I am a PhD candidate in the Graduate Group in Computational Biology. I’m interested in problems that intersect population genetics and applied and theoretical statistics. Prior to graduate school, I studied variation in bacterial translational motif usage in the Amaral Lab at the Northwestern University Institute for Complex Systems. More recently, my thesis research has focused on developing new methods for detecting selective sweeps and inferring demographic models, along with applied population genetics of humans and side-blotched lizards.
Email: ajstern@berkeley.edu

 
 
 
 

Debora Brandt (She/Her)
I’m interested in studying the evolutionary history of species using genomic data. My current research is focused on humans, using modern and ancient genomic data to learn about our demographic history.
Email: deboraycb@berkeley.edu

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Emma Steigerwald (She/Her)
I am interested in whether climate change can exacerbate emerging infectious disease pressures on wild populations by affecting spatial patterns of genetic diversity. To explore this question, I work with Pleurodema marmoratum in the Cordillera Vilcanota of Southern Peru– the highest-living amphibians in the world!
Email: emma_steigerwald@berkeley.edu

 
 
 
 

Diana Aguilar Gómez (She/Her)
I am a PhD Candidate from the Computational Biology Program. I got my undergraduate degree in Genomic Science from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). During that time, I worked with sex chromosome evolution and epigenetics. I currently work with skin color adaptation and population history. My main two projects involve color evolution in toad-headed lizards from China and strawberry poison frogs from Panama.
email: aguilar-gomez@berkeley.edu

 
 
 
 

POSTDOCTORATE STUDENTS

 

Ammon Corl (He/Him)
My fields of study include evolutionary biology, behavioral ecology, herpetology, and population genetics. I am particularly interested in questions pertaining to speciation, sexual selection, the maintenance and loss of polymorphism, and the genetic basis of adaptive phenotypes in wild populations. My current project in the Nielsen lab is to investigate the genetic basis of the polymorphic mating strategies found in the side-blotched lizard (Uta stansburiana). A major goal of this project is to better understand how specialized mating phenotypes are able to evolve within a species. I have also worked on another project with side-blotched lizards that studied the genetic basis of adaptation following plastic changes in coloration in a novel environment. Please visit my website for more information about my research. https://ammoncorl.github.io/
Email: ammoncorl (at) berkeley.edu

Hongru Wang
I was trained in a rice molecular genetics lab, but got interested in the evolutionary genetic aspects of rice. My research interests include understanding mechanisms and consequences of genetic admixture. Currently, I am using rice genus as a model system to address the potential contribution of gene flow to speciation and domestication. Learning from the genomic pattern of rice domestication, I also work with collaborators to identify and validate new targets for further crop improvement using gene editing technology.
email: henryscut@hotmail.com

 

Gregory Owens (He/Him)
I am a Banting Fellow in the Nielsen lab working on developing better methods to detect introgression in genomic data. My work has focused on understanding the network of hybridization and gene flow occurring within the sunflower genus, Helianthus. More broadly, I aim to quantify the frequency of and implications of hybridization across the tree of life.
Email: gregory.owens@berkeley.edu
Website: owensgl.github.io

 
 
 
 

 

Matt McElroy
Matt’s postdoctoral research is funded by the NSF-PRFB in Biological Collections. He is interested in the genomics of thermal adaptation and water-loss physiology in Puerto Rican anoles. Matt is working with Nielsen Lab (IB), Wang Lab (ESPM), and will be working across museum institutes, including the MVZ.

 
 

April Wei
I am a postdoc in the Nielsen lab seeking to understand recent human evolution and genetic architecture. I use the UK Biobank data to study ongoing selection, archaic admixture, gene-by-environment interactions, and genetic interactions. For future work, I am interested in jointing statistical genetics with evolutionary genetics. I am also interested in connecting the documented exposures to new environments in the human history with the genetic adaptation through novel/standing variation, or admixture, as well as the associated adaptive and responsive consequences at the molecular, cellular, and organism level.
E-mail: aprilwei@berkeley.edu
Website: https://xinzhuaprilwei.weebly.com

 
 
 

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS

 

LONG TERM VISITORS & ASSOCIATES