Welcome to the Messer lab in the Department of Biological Statistics and Computational Biology at Cornell University. We are interested in a broad range of topics in evolutionary biology and population genetics. A particular focus of the lab lies in studying cases of rapid adaptation that allow us to observe evolution in real-time and sometimes even repeatedly. Examples of such rapid adaptations include the evolution of pesticide and drug resistance, the domestication of dogs, and cases of adaptive introgression from Neanderthals into modern human populations. Current research projects in the lab employ a wide spectrum of computational and analytical approaches in concert with the analysis of large-scale population genomic data. We are also establishing an experimental program to study the population dynamics of CRISPR gene drives, a fascinating new technology that may allow us to rapidly spread genetically-engineered alleles in a population. The potential applications of such gene drives are ambitious and widely varied, ranging from the eradication of disease vectors to the preservation of endangered species.
Philipp W. Messer
Department of Biological Statistics and Computational Biology
102J Weill Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853