Shannon Taylor

Research Interests

I am interested in how phenotypic diversity is produced during development, and to what extent this is controlled by genes. In my PhD I am studying Lake Malawi cichlids, in the lab of Dr Berta Verd. Cichlids are genetically very similar yet enormously morphologically diverse, varying in colour, size, shape, and somite/vertebrae number, making them an excellent system to study the causes of phenotypic diversity. I am investigating cell state transitions in the cichlid embryonic tailbud, where the somites are produced, using a combination of wet-lab developmental biology, microscopy and image analysis, and mathematical modelling.