Master in Molecular and Cellular Biology (Universite Lyon I / Ecole Normale Superieure de Lyon, 2007)
PhD in Evolutionary Genetics (University of California Irvine, 2012)
Post-Doctoral Fellow (Cornell University, 2012-2014)
Post-Doctoral Fellow (University of California Berkeley, 2014-present)
My experimental work with butterflies is primarily centered on the developmental genetics of wing patterning, with a focus on the morphogenetic mechanisms that create positional information on the wing. Butterfly wings, especially in Heliconius, are a crucible of evolutionary wizardry that provide an unique opportunity to study how phenotypes are tinkered over time. I have been working extensively with Bob Reed to characterize the developmental architecture of pattern variation, with a particular focus on the optix and WntA genes.
While working with Bob Reed on butterfly wing patterning, I had the chance to be hosted by the lab of Tom Schilling at UC Irvine, a cross-over that enhanced my developmental culture. Continuing on that path, I now joined the Patel Lab at UC Berkeley with the goal to develop butterfly wing patterns as a model system for comparative developmental biology. A providential technique is provided by the power of CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing. I successfully generated mutants for developmental genes in the crustacean Parhyale hawaiiensis, and will next assess the feasibility of this technique in the lepidopterans Junonia coenia and Ephestia kuhniella.