Lab Members

Patricia (Trisha) Wittkopp : Principal Investigator

Patricia (Trisha) Wittkopp

Principal Investigator

Dr. Wittkopp's studies of evolution and development in Drosophila started during her undergraduate research with Dr. Greg Gibson at the University of Michigan (B.S. 1997), and continued during her doctoral work at the University of Wisconsin with Dr. Sean Carroll (Ph.D. 2002). From 2002-2005, Dr. Wittkopp studied the evolution of gene expression as a Damon Runyon Cancer Research Postdoctoral Fellow with Dr. Andy Clark at Cornell University. Coming full circle, the Wittkopp lab was officially founded at U. Michigan in August 2005.

Curriculum Vitae

wittkopp@umich.edu
Fabien Duveau : Assistant Research Scientist

Fabien Duveau

Assistant Research Scientist

Fabien joined the lab in May 2012 after conducting doctoral studies on the evolution of a robust developmental system in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans in Marie-Anne Félix’ team (University Paris 7). For his postdoctoral work, he is now interested in understanding how noise in gene expression can affect fitness and how past selection pressures on gene expression can influence future evolutionary trajectories using experimental evolution approaches in yeast. This work is supported by an EMBO postdoctoral fellowship.

fduveau@umich.edu
Andrea Hodgins-Davis : Post-doctoral Fellow

Andrea Hodgins-Davis

Post-doctoral Fellow

Andrea joined the lab in May 2014 after completing her PhD at Yale University, where she worked with Jeff Townsend in the Dept of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology combining empirical and theoretical approaches to study the evolution of genome-wide gene expression in budding yeast across an environmental gradient. In the Wittkopp lab, Andrea will study the evolvability of gene expression in yeast.

andreahd@umich.edu
Jennifer Lachowiec : Post-doctoral Fellow

Jennifer Lachowiec

Post-doctoral Fellow

Jen joined the lab in October 2014 after completing her PhD under the guidance of Christine Queitsch at the University of Washington, Seattle, during which she studied molecular mechanisms that control robustness to genetic perturbations and noise. Her projects in the Wittkopp lab will examine the evolution of gene expression using flies as a model.

lachoj@umich.edu
Bing Yang : MCDB Graduate Student

Bing Yang

MCDB Graduate Student

Bing earned his B.S. in Biology from Peking University. During that time he worked in Wensheng Wei's lab on interaction between pathogen and host. He joined the lab in December 2011, and is now working on using sequencing data to interpret regulation change in evolutionary history. He is also interested in integrating computational methods in understanding developmental mechanisms in flies.

ypauling@umich.edu
Alisha John : Research Technician/Lab Manager

Alisha John

Research Technician/Lab Manager

Alisha earned her B.S. in Chemical Engineering with a minor in Biological Sciences from Wayne State University (Detroit, MI) in 2011. She then entered the Program in Biomedical Sciences (PiBS) at the University of Michigan and joined the Wittkopp Lab in May 2012. Alisha is broadly interested in the relationships between changes in noncoding sequences of DNA, gene expression, and phenotypic evolution. Currently she is exploring these relationships using pigmentation differences between two closely-related fruit fly species, Drosophila americana and Drosophila novamexicana. Alisha completed her PhD in Molecular, Cellular, & Developmental Biology (MCDB) in May 2017. She is now a Research Scientist and Lab Manager for the Wittkopp Lab

alishav@umich.edu
Abby Lamb : MCDB Graduate Student

Abby Lamb

MCDB Graduate Student

Abby earned her B.S. in Biology from University of Houston in 2012, where she studied reinforcement in experimentally evolved Drosophila pseudoobscura and D. persimilis populations. She started working in the Wittkopp lab in January 2014. Abby is currently investigating the role of regulatory sequence divergence in the differential pigmentation phenotypes of D. americana and D. novamexicana.

abbylamb@umich.edu
Jon Massey : EEB Graduate Student

Jon Massey

EEB Graduate Student

Jon studied Entomology as an undergraduate student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and received a B.S. with Highest Distinction in 2013. At Illinois, he completed a senior thesis project under the supervision of Dr. Gene Robinson that was focused on the effects of brain oxidative metabolism on aggression in the vinegar fly. Jon continued his research on fly aggression under the supervision of Dr. Marla Sokolowski at the University of Toronto with a focus on the effects of the foraging gene in modulating aggressive behaviors; he completed his M.S. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Toronto in 2014. In the Wittkopp Lab, Jon is interested in understanding the genetic basis of species differences in behavior and morphology.

jhmassey@umich.edu
Petra Vande Zande : MCDB Graduate Student

Petra Vande Zande

MCDB Graduate Student

Petra graduated from Cornerstone University with a B.A. in Biology for Secondary Education in 2010, and taught high school biology for several years in Wisconsin previous to entering graduate school and joining the Wittkopp Lab in 2016. As a high school teacher, she worked with faculty members at the University of Wisconsin at Whitewater to create a Summer Research Immersion Experience for high school students. Petra remains enthusiastic about connecting students to the world of research and is excited to enter the research community herself.

pvzande@umich.edu
Crisandra (Jade) Diaz : MCDB Graduate Student

Crisandra (Jade) Diaz

MCDB Graduate Student

Jade received her B.S. in Biology and Minor in Chemistry from New Mexico State University in 2015. Jade is a MARC Scholar (Maximizing Access to Research Careers) and began her undergraduate research in the lab of Dr. Jiannong Xu using bioinformatics to assess the gut microbiome of mosquito larvae. In the summer of 2014, she received a summer internship and worked under Aurelie Rakotondrafara as a part of the Integrated Biological Sciences Summer Research Program at UW-Madison. She is currently working on yeast projects that consist of mutating a transcription factor (GCR1) of a highly expressed promoter in yeast (TDH3) and observing the resulting gene expression. Jade is supported by the Rackham Merit Fellowship.

cjaded@umich.edu
Joe Walker : MCDB Graduate Student

Joe Walker

MCDB Graduate Student

Joe studied Neurology and Physiology along with Genetics as an undergraduate student at Purdue University and received his B.S in 2012. During that time, he worked in the labs of Dr. Michael Zanis, Dr. Nancy Emery and spent a summer in the lab of Dr. Antonia Monteiro, and completed his honors thesis on the evolution of mononucleotide repeats. Joe then completed his Masters degree in the lab of Dr. Nancy Emery and worked as a research tech at the bioinformatics core at Purdue University. He is currently co-advised by Dr. Trisha Wittkopp and Dr. Stephen Smith, and is interested in finding ways to study differential gene expression in a phylogenetic context.

jfwalker@umich.edu
Rebecca Tarnopol : Undergraduate Researcher

Rebecca Tarnopol

Undergraduate Researcher

Rebecca joined the lab in May 2016. She is a sophomore in the LSA Honors Program with an intended major of Cellular and Molecular Biology. She is working with post-doc Jen Lachowiec on various projects involving gene regulation in different species of Drosophila.

tarnopol@umich.edu
Hannah Shuman : Undergraduate Researcher

Hannah Shuman

Undergraduate Researcher

Hannah joined the lab in May 2016. A rising Junior at UM, she is majoring in Biomolecular Science and German. She is currently studying the evolution of gene regulation across multiple species of flies.

hashuman@umich.edu
Lisa Kim : Research Technician

Lisa Kim

Research Technician

Lisa is a 4th year student at the University of Michigan majoring in Biology, set to graduate in December 2016. In the future year, she hopes to continue her research in the lab as an assistant to understand how noise in gene expression affects fitness in yeast, while also applying to veterinary schools.

ligiki@umich.edu
Kiran Ajani : Undergraduate Researcher

Kiran Ajani

Undergraduate Researcher

Kiran joined the lab in August 2016 as a lab assistant for general maintenance, as well as contributing to a project with Elizabeth Walker and Fabien Duveau to understand how noise in gene expression affects fitness in yeast. She is an honors LSA undergraduate with an interest in Neuroscience.

kajani@umich.edu

Alumni