Professor Kayla King

Research Interests

What drives rapid evolution? What are the benefits of sex? Why is genetic diversity so high in natural populations? 

My research addresses these fundamental problems in evolutionary biology by studying the interactions between parasites and hosts. Parasites are ubiquitous, and their antagonism can be severe and genotype-specific. Thus, host-parasite interactions provide a powerful empirical framework to elucidate the causes and consequences of intra- and interspecific evolutionary changes. Our work focuses on the ecological and genetic aspects of rapid (co)evolution, with particular implications for community interactions, mating systems, and the maintenance of diversity. We use a combination of experimental evolution of lab populations, genomics, theory, and collections from natural populations.

I am keen to build a stimulating and collaborative research environment. Applicants for graduate and research fellow positions in my lab are welcome. Please send me your CV and a description of your research interests. 

  • In vivo microbial coevolution favours host protection and plastic downregulation of immunity

  • Invasive freshwater snails form novel microbial relationships

  • Evolution and maintenance of microbe-mediated protection under occasional pathogen infection.

  • Let's emerge from the pandemic lockdown into a fairer academic world.

  • Impacts of a novel defensive symbiosis on the nematode host microbiome

  • Measuring Coevolutionary Dynamics in Species-Rich Communities

  • The hypercomplex genome of an insect reproductive parasite highlights the importance of lateral gene transfer in symbiont biology

  • Microbiome: Evolution in a World of Interaction.

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