Research

Primarily our research is focussed on understanding the patterns and processes of evolution and the functional consequences of change at the DNA level.  We are interested in fundamental questions in biology from the origin of the eukaryotic cell to the phenotypic diversity of animals. We are focused on understanding the contributions of tree-like and non-treelike processes to evolution of organisms in regulatory and protein coding elements. We employ computationally-intense approaches and work closely with laboratory researchers.  Please see our Publications

 

Ongoing projects in our group:

Species-specific immune responses – using molecular evolution as a predictive tool for model choice.

Paleobiochemistry – Adaptation and functional specificity of proteins in different species.

Comparative genomic and transcriptomic analyses of the Dendrobatidae – how do poison arrow frogs make their poison.

Evolutionary theory and the origin of the eukaryotic cell.

Cancer Evolution and Cancer Selection Theory.

Phylogenetics and Phylogenomics.

Molecular Comparative Zoology.

Uncovering the tree-like and non-treelike processes that contribute to phenotypic diversity and speciation.

Great Ape comparative genomics and transcriptomics and the role of genome architecture in the emergence of novelty.

We are always looking for collaborators and new people to come and work with us. Please get in contact if you are interested in what we do: m.oconnell@leeds.ac.uk