How does evolution proceed from common starting points and go on to generate the amazing display of biodiversity we see today?  The evolutionary origins of novel and complex forms has puzzled biologists since before Darwin’s time and persists as one of the central questions in current biology.  My research sheds light on this question using the origins and evolution of the animal sensory systems as a model. My approach integrates genomic, wet lab and behavioral data using phylogenetic methods. I am most interested in the sensory systems of early branching animal taxa and in those of other taxa that occupy key positions in the animal tree of life.

David Plachetzki PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Molecular, Cellular & Biomedical Sciences
The University of New Hampshire
Rudman Hall
Durham, NH 03824