I am the Founding Director of the ASU Center for Evolution & Medicine. Center initiatives include producing research that demonstrates the power of evolutionary biology to address problems in medicine and public health, developing new courses, and holding conferences and workshops.
I turned to science writing in 2006 after a lifetime career in television – mainly for the BBC – writing, producing and directing science documentaries – many with evolution as their theme. My first book was, “Not a Chimp: The search for the Genes That Made Us Human” which was published by Oxford University Press in 2009. My second book, about evolutionary medicine, is called “Body By Darwin” and was published in October 2015 by University of Chicago Press. It is the reason I have found myself the Associate Editor of Evmedreview!
My research interests include: understanding, at a molecular level, immunological recognition, antibody function, vaccine efficacy, mechanisms of immunity to bacterial and viral pathogens, the pathogenesis of systemic lupus erythematosus, and applications of principles of evolution to immunology and related biomedical fields.
My research is focused on evolution and the human microbiota. Specifically, I am interested in how nutrition and circadian rhythm interact with gut microbes in ways that sometimes make us sick. Currently, my colleagues and I are studying whether working night shifts alters the gut microbiota, harms the gut barrier, and causes inflammation.
I am a researcher and science communicator working as a Postdoctoral Scholar at Arizona State University’s Center for Evolution and Medicine. My past research has focused on how dehydration affects physiological functions like immunity and stress responses in vertebrates.