Evolutionary ecology of host-parasite interactions

I am studying the consequences of multiple infections for virulence evolution. Using a joint experimental evolution and modeling approach, I seek to understand how coinfection dynamics shape the evolution of pathogens across different environments.

Plant-Insect interactions in agroecosystems

My PhD research examined the effects of species invasions on ecological communities.Using invasive ants as a model system, I investigated the role of direct and indirect invasive interactions including competition and parasitism on native ant communities. I further developed spatial models to understand under what conditions species can invade communities

Vector behavior and infectious disease dynamics

As part of an international working group, we are investigating the role of general vector traits driving coinfection dynamics in humans, plants, and animals .


. Reduction of species coexistence through mixing in a spatial competition model. Theoretical ecology. , 2017.

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. From insinuator to dominator: Foraging switching by an exotic ant. Diversity and Distributions. , 2017.

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. Self-organized spatial pattern determines biodiversity in spatial competition. Journal of Theoretical Biology. , 2012.

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. Senay Yitbarek, John H. Vandermeer, Dave Allen. 2011. The Combined Effects of Exogenous and Endogenous Variability on the Spatial Distribution of Ant Communities in a Forested Ecosystem (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Environmental Entomology. , 2011.

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. Reconsidering Invasive Grass and Mowing Impacts on Native Arthropod Populations in a Restored Grassland. The Berkeley McNair Research Journal. , 2008.



International Association of Black Ecologists.



The Science of Origins (Honors 242).

Genomics in Society (EEB 142)

Ecology and Evolution of Infectious Diseases (EEB 315).

Food, Energy, and the Environment (EEB 101).

Introductory Biology (EEB 172 & 173).