Broadly speaking, activities in the Whitehead lab revolve around Environmental, Ecological, and Evolutionary Genomics research. These lines of research seek to understand how genomes integrate cues from, respond to, and are shaped by the external environment. We examine genomic responses to stress that occur over physiological timescales (acclimation responses) and over evolutionary timescales (adaptive responses). Many complementary approaches are integrated into our program, including genome expression profiling, population genetics/genomics and phylogenetics, and physiology, to study how individuals and species respond to and adapt to environmental stress. Stressors of interest include those that are natural (temperature, salinity) or of human origin (pollutants).

Techniques most commonly utilized in our lab include (but not limited to):
High Throughput Whole Genome and Reduced (RAD-Seq) Sequencing for markers
Genome Assembly (recently completed fundulus heteroclitus)
Transcriptome of multiple tissues such as gill, brain, whole embryo, and liver

Selected Publications:

Dubansky, B., A. Whitehead, J. Miller, C.D. Rice, and F. Galvez (in press). Multi-tissue molecular, genomic, and developmental effects of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill on resident Gulf killifish (Fundulus grandis). Environmental Science & Technology; PDF. * press release

Whitehead, A., S. Zhang, J. Roach, and F. Galvez (in press). Common functional targets of adaptive micro- and macro-evolutionary divergence in killifish. Molecular Ecology.

Whitehead, A., B. Dubansky, C. Bodinier, T. Garcia, S. Miles, C. Pilley, V. Raghunathan, J. Roach, N. Walker, R.B. Walter, C.D. Rice, and F. Galvez (2012). Genomic and physiological footprint of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill on resident marsh fishes. PNAS, 109(50): 20298-20302; NSF Press Release; PubMed; PDF

Whitehead, A., J.L. Roach, S. Zhang, and F. Galvez (2012). Salinity- and population-dependent genome regulatory response during osmotic acclimation in the killifish (Fundulus heteroclitus) gill. Journal of Experimental Biology, 215: 1293-1305. PubMed; PDF

Whitehead, A. (2012). Comparative genomics in ecological physiology: Toward a more nuanced understanding of acclimation and adaptation. Journal of Experimental Biology, 215: 884-891. PubMed; PDF

Current Lab members:
Andrew Whitehead - PI
Jenifer Roach - Lab Manager
Jeffrey Miller - Graduate Student (Pharmacology and Toxicology)
Reid Brennen - Graduate Student (Ecology - Physiological Ecology) (for research interests) (main page)