Department of Ecology & Evolution

Welcome to the Kronforst lab at the University of Chicago's Department of Ecology & Evolution. We study the evolution and genetics of adaptation and speciation, using butterflies as our primary model system.

Natural biological systems are exceptionally diverse in terms of species richness, phenotypic form and function, and ecological interactions. Our research seeks to explain the origin and maintenance of this diversity across multiple levels of organization, from individual nucleotides to entire communities. As a tool to understanding the dynamics of biological diversity, much of our work focuses on adaptive phenotypic diversification and speciation in tropical butterflies, such as the genus Heliconius.

Heliconius mimicry geneticsPlease see our new paper in Current Biology, and associated press, about Heliconius mimicry genetics.

pierisPlease see our new paper in Nature Ecology & Evolution, and associated content, about the molecular interactions between butterflies and their host-plants.

WntA Butterflies



Hyde Park Hunting
See how we're using a local butterfly to address fundamental questions in ecology and evolution. Video

Evolution's Continuing Creativity
Researchers glimpse speciation in action: One species of butterfly that may soon diverge into two. Video

© Copyright 2012 Kronforst Lab.
Site design: Academic Web Pages