Welcome to our lab!

Behaviors result from integrated systems of neural circuits, muscles and body structures. These systems, working together and interacting with the physical environment, generate movement. Movement and the morphology that underlies it change strikingly over developmental and evolutionary time while maintaining critical roles for the organism. Our research examines how such systems function, how they change through the life history of an organism and how they diversify over longer timescales across the landscape of animal evolution. 

At the foundation of our work is the study of how groups of neurons are organized into circuits.  We are addressing how circuits in the brain and spinal cord control and coordinate movement, examining both output to motor systems as well as how sensation of mechanical signals from the environment modulate that output.

Our primary research species is the zebrafish, a genetic and developmental model that provides exceptional in vivo accessibility to neural circuits of the brain and spinal cord and that shares a wide range of nervous system features with other vertebrates. 

For broader work on behavior and biomechanics, we also study fishes comparatively, taking advantage of exceptional taxonomic diversity as well as enormous morphological and behavioral richness in the group.

In both model system and comparative contexts we aim to develop greater understanding of neuromechanical systems for movement in vertebrates and general principles of how such systems develop and evolve.