Photo of Stanford student and Stanford Bio-X Undergraduate Summer Research Program Participant David Lee.
2020 Undergraduate Summer Research Program Participant

Home Department: undeclared
Mentor: David Kingsley, Developmental Biology

“The Genetic Basis of Common Skeletal Evolution in Sticklebacks”

The bony skeleton plays a key role in feeding, support, locomotion, and tissue protection in vertebrates. Species in different environments frequently evolve major differences in the size, shape, number, and density of bones. Although skeletal changes play a key role in both environmental adaptation and protection from predators and common diseases, the genetic and genomic basis of skeletal changes in wild vertebrate species are still poorly understood. David will examine this question by characterizing the genetic basis of interesting changes in bone density and dorsal spine number evolving in stickleback fish (Gasterosteus aculeatus and Apeltes quadracus).