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We are interested in the broad field of evolutionary genetics. Questions we are currently addressing include the following.

 

How have selection and drift interacted in the evolutionary history of our lineage? To what extent do the effects of drift override or erase the changes introduced by recent selection?

How does natural selection shape variation at MHC genes? While it is widely agreed that MHC genes experience strong balancing selection, the timescale, mode of selection (overdominant, frequency-dependent or variable over space and time) remains an open question.

What are the targets of balancing selection in the human genome? Most scans for natural selection focus on directional selection. What is the best approach to detect selection that increases diversity, as is the case of balancing selection? What are the targets?

What are the deleterious consequences of natural selection? By shaping the frequency of a selected locus, the efficacy of selection at closely linked sites is reduced, and an increase in the accumulation of deleterious variants is expected. How much has this processes burdened our genomes with deleterious variants

Can we see the footprint of recent selection in the genomes of admixed Brazilian populations? Recent selection can cause changes in ancestry proportions. Is this visible in admixed populations from Brazil?

Our research includes both bioinformatic analyses of publicly available data, as well as of datasets generated by us.

  

Teaching

BIO0312