Heath Blackmon

Heath Blackmon


I am interested in the evolution of genome structure at all scales. My research program focuses specifically on the development and application of phylogenetic comparative approaches to quantitatively investigate the tempo and mode of genome evolution and understand the interplay between life history and genome structure. I am also heavily invested in developing tools to make data more widely accessible to the research community at large. For instance I developed the Coleoptera Karyotype Database (www.uta.edu/karyodb/) that served as a template for the larger Tree of Sex Database (www.treeofsex.org/), which I continue to help maintain. Part of my work also includes development of novel methods to analyze large datasets in phylogenetic and quantitative genetic frameworks. These efforts are best represented by two of my R packages, evobiR and SAGA, that are available on CRAN.

Evolutionary Studies Genetics Genomics

Work details

Assistant Professor

Texas A&M University
September 2017
The Blackmon Lab is in the Biology Department at Texas A&M University. We have two broad areas of inquiry. The first is genome evolution, specifically sex chromosome and structural evolution. The second is the development of methods and databases that accelerate the analysis of data within a quantitative genetic or phylogenetic framework. To address these topics, we use a broad range of approaches including theoretical population genetics, bioinformatics, genomics, and molecular cytogenetics. Although we have projects involving all types of organisms, we often study beetles, and we keep several species in the lab as model organisms.

Postdoctoral Scholar

University of Minnesota
August 2015 - August 2017
Ecology, Evolution and Behavior
Heath joined the Golberg lab to work on a collaborative project with Itay Mayrose on chromosome number evolution. He also was awarded a Grand Challenges postdoctoral grant which he used to work on theoretical population genetics in the Brandvain lab.

PeerJ Contributions