Evolution and development

Photo: Damian Kelly
Photo: Damian Kelly

Understanding the origin and diversity of life on earth remains one of nature’s most fascinating mysteries. We meet this challenge by investigating how cells become complex organs during development, and how organisms, both on land and in the ocean, have evolved into such astonishing variety.

Using world-class facilities, we explore the evolution of traits that organisms use to succeed, from venom and brains to immune systems and reproduction. We study how insects communicate and the consequences for pest control, how plants are built and how animals move, how our fauna and flora have changed through time, and how the laws of transmission can be modified epigenetically.

Our research is quantitative and experimental, and with it we create models to understand how nature works. Our findings inform crop production and antibiotic resistance, as well as ecological processes and conservation efforts across Australia and the world.  

Our people

Contact one of our evolution and development researchers.