Michael McDonald


Michael McDonald

Ph.D. Massy University

Telephone: +61 3 9905 1697
Fax: +61 3 9905 5613
Email: Mike.McDonald@monash.edu

Research Group Website


Mike completed at PhD in Evolutionary Genetics at the Institute for Advanced Study at Massy University in New Zealand in 2009. After that he took up a Distinguished Postdoctoral fellowship at the Institute of Molecular Biology at Academia Sinica in Taiwan. In 2012 Mike moved to the USA to take up a Postdoctoral fellow ship in the FAS Center for Systems Biology at Harvard University.

Mike is interested in the genetics of adaptation. To study this question, his lab propagates populations of yeast (and other microbes) for 1000's of generations in a variety of laboratory environments. Microbes grow and divide very quickly, providing a means for directly observing evolution as it happens. The goal is to understand how organisms adapt to better fit their environment, asking what genes do adaptive mutations occur in, how do the mutations change the genetic program of the cell and ultimately, whether we can predict how organisms will respond to environmental change. Mikes lab employs methods such as high throughput robotic liquid handling, whole genome sequencing and molecular genetic techniques.