Professor Matt MacManes. I am interested in evolutionary genomics and computational biology. I work on a number of animals including Peromyscus (rodents), frogs, extant dinosaurs, and increasingly, microorganisms. I am a strong Open Access and Open Science advocate.

Graduate Students


Lauren Kordonowy: The genetic basis of local adaptations is an expanding hot topic in genomics research because much remains unknown about the genes responsible for adaptability to extreme habitats, such as high altitudes, saline environments, and arid landscapes. Mice within the Peromyscus genus are an ideal platform to launch comparative genomic studies, because divergent species reside across a wide range of habitats, including several deserts. There are also additional rodent genomes available which should be particularly relevant to explore the genetic foundation of desert adaptions. My dissertation work will be to sequence, assemble and annotate the genome of the desert specialist P. crinitus and to analyze genomic differences between six rodent species in order to elucidate genes critical for desert survival.

Taruna Aggarwal: Evolution and Population Dynamics of an Emergent Fungal Pathogen, Geosmithia morbida. Emerging fungal pathogens are responsible for extensive damage to agricultural crops as well as forest hosts. They also represent one of the greatest threats to food security and global diversity. A particularly virulent species is Geosmithia morbida, which causes Thousand Cankers Disease (TCD) in the eastern black walnut tree, Juglans nigra. The pathogen is vectored into the host via Pityophthorus juglandis (i.e. walnut twig beetle). The evolution of pathogenicity is novel with the Geosmithia genus. My goal is to uncover the molecular mechanisms that gave rise to this new trait by comparing pathogenic G. morbida isolates with nonpathogenic relatives.

Andrew Lang: Text


Lindsey Havens: Lindsay graduated in December of 2015 with her MS, and is doing bioinformatics for a drug discovery company in Maryland.

Kathy Antosca: graduated in 2015 with her BS, and is a PhD student in Biostastics at Dartmouth.

Jennifer Dickson: graduated in 2015 with her BS, and is working at the Mayo clinic.



Hannah Green: I’m a biology major and a member of the class of 2017 at the University of New Hampshire. I plan on attending graduate school, getting my PhD, and eventually becoming a professor. I have concentrated interests in the fields of genetics and microbiology. I absolutely LOVE science and all the possibilities that are revolved around it ~ I guess you could say I’m a nerd!!! In my free time I love hanging out with my friends, snowboarding, working out, and hiking!

Molly Dawson: Text

Sarah LaCourse: Text

Kaelina Lombardo: I’m a genetics major and a member of the class of 2018 at the University of New Hampshire. After taking genetics and evolution courses and working on a research project involving Drosophila melanogaster in high school, I got hooked on the mysterious world of evolutionary genetics. I believe that there is much value in the thorough exploration of genes and hope to help uncover a thing or two as a researcher in the future. In my limited spare time I enjoy drawing, playing volleyball, sleeping and petting dogs.

Evice Bolton:I am a junior biomedical science major in the medical and veterinary sciences option and I plan on attending veterinary school after I graduate. After taking a genetics course I became very interested in the role genetics plays in disease and how it will affect medicine in the future. In my spare time I enjoy walking my dog and volunteering at a wildlife center and a spay and neuter clinic.