Welcome to the Kronforst lab at the University of Chicago’s Department of Ecology & Evolution. We study the molecular genetic basis of organismal diversity, with a special emphasis on butterflies. Our research explores the molecular mechanisms responsible for the evolutionary processes of adaptation and speciation, and we do this in the context of morphology, physiology, and behavior. Major themes of research include color patterning, mating behavior, migration, and host-plant herbivory. We utilize a diversity of methods, spanning genomics, statistical and population genetics, phylogenetics, developmental biology, functional genetics, genome editing and animal behavior.

The Kronforst lab is committed to producing creative, high-impact research; creating a nurturing, inclusive research environment; training the next generation of integrative biologists; and translating our work and insights into practical knowledge for the general public.

News & Updates
  • January 17, 2023

    We’ve published a commentary in PNAS about butterfly mimicry evolution. Please take a look at our commentary and the fascinating paper by Basu et al.

  • September 29, 2022

    We’ve published a new preprint about aristaless1, aristaless2, and the development of Heliconius butterflies. Please check it out!

  • September 20, 2022

    Please see our new preprint about how doublesex and its interactions generate color pattern mimicry in swallowtail butterflies.