Plant Evolutionary Genetics

Our research team is broadly interested in the genetic bases of adaptation and the population and genomic context in which adaptive evolution occurs. We focus much of our research on plant species evolving in agricultural environments and on their close relatives. These novel and highly modified environments have provided the setting for drastic evolutionary change in many plant groups.

We ask questions about the origins and evolution of agricultural weeds, the genetic processes underlying crop domestication, and the mechanisms of trait evolution in crop wild relatives. To address these topics, we use tools from the fields of comparative genomics, population genetics, evolutionary ecology, and molecular biology.



March 2022 – The Caicedo lab has a new honorary member. Welcome to the world baby Tavares! And Maryam has been awarded a Natural History Collections grant for her work on tomato defense. Congratulations, Maryam!

March 2022 – Bahman Khahaninamin has joined the lab for a rotation. Welcome Bahman! And Dr. Maria Soledad Ureta, from La Universidad Nacional el Sur (and a colleague of Ale’s) has arrived for a 3 week visit. A longer visit next time, Sole!

February 2022 – Dr. Alejandro Presotto, from La Universidad Nacional del Sur, Bahía Blanca, Argentina, has arrived for a 3 month Fulbright visit. We are excited about Argentinean weedy rice! Welcome, Ale!

January 2022 – Xiang and Jake have scored another Lotta Crabtree Fellowship, congratulations! Undergrad Jessica Butura has joined the lab to carry out her honors thesis research.

September 2021 – Undergrad Cecilia Knowles has joined the lab to help out Rachel with her work on the rice microbiome.

June 2021 – NTID students, Calvin Park and Ryan Krieger have joined the lab for a summer REU. Welcome, Calvin and Ryan!

May 2021 – Xiang has been awarded a Gilgut Fellowship to support his summer research. Congratulations, Xiang!

May 2021 – Maryam has decided to permanently join our lab for her PhD! Welcome, Maryam!

December 2020 – Jake and Xiang have been awarded Lotta Crabtree Fellowships for Spring 2021! This is the third time each has been awarded this prestigious fellowship, which will allow them to fully focus on their research during the spring semester. Congratulations!

December 2020 – Maryam Rashidzade, Plant Biology first year student has joined our lab for a rotation. Welcome, Maryam!

September 2020 – Andrea Marroquin, Plant Biology first year student has joined our lab for a rotation. Welcome, Andrea!