Welcome to the Lazzaro Lab at Cornell University! Our work is focused on the evolutionary genetics of insect-pathogen interactions. Our projects include population genomic and molecular evolutionary analysis of insect immune systems and quantitative genetic study of differences in immune performance among individuals in a population. We seek to identify the genes responsible for individual differences in resistance or susceptibility to infection and environmental factors that influence defense. We are determining how genotype and environment interact to shape defense traits, and how seemingly distinct physiological processes are genetically linked and may constrain each other. We are especially interested in the effects of dietary nutrition and metabolism, gut microbiological communities, and reproductive status on immune performance. We use molecular tools and genomic analysis in our research. Read more at our Research page.

About the Principal Investigator

Brian P. Lazzaro, Associate Professor
Department of Entomology, Cornell University
B.S., Genetics, 1995
University of California, Davis

Ph.D., Population Genetics, 2002
Pennsylvania State University

Curriculum vitae
Our lab accepts graduate students through the Graduate Training Fields of Entomology, Genetics & Development, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, and Comparative Biomedical Sciences.

I teach a course in Ecological Genetics and am one of multiple instructors involved in teaching introductory Evolutionary Biology and Diversity.
Lazzaro Lab News

Dr. Virginia Howick is the most newly minted Lazzaro Lab Ph.D.


Ginny Howick has defended her final Ph.D. thesis, "The Evolution and Genetic Architecture of Defense as Resistance to and Tolerance of Pathogenic Infection in Drosophila." In these four chapters, Ginny makes a detailed examination of the genetic basis for resistance and tolerance, and examines the evolutionary implications of natural genetic variation in both components of defense. Congratulations, Ginny, on five years of hard work and your current success.

Lazzaro Lab News archive