Evolution, Ecology & Organismal Biology

Alan Brelsford

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Office: (951) 827-5632
Fax: (951) 827-4286
2352 Spieth Hall
Email: alan.brelsford@ucr.edu

Alan Brelsford, Assistant Professor

Ph.D., University of British Columbia, 2010


Google Scholar profile

I am an evolutionary geneticist broadly interested in hybridization, speciation, and the evolution of sex chromosomes and other supergenes. My research seeks to identify the regions of the genome responsible for evolutionarily important traits, and use variation at regions to study the history of these traits. Current study systems include the population genomics of social behavior in ants, color pattern in birds, sex determination in frogs, and reproductive barriers between related species in all three of these groups. Research in my lab integrates field, lab, and computational methods.


  • Purcell, J., Zahnd, S., Athanasiades, A., Turler, R., Chapuisat, M., and A. Brelsford. 2016. Ants exhibit asymmetric hybridization in a mosaic hybrid zone. In press, Mol. Ecol.
  • Toews, D. P. L., Taylor, S. A., Vallender, R., Brelsford, A., Butcher, B. G., Messer, P. W., and I. J. Lovette. 2016. Plumage genes and little else distinguish the genomes of hybridizing warblers. Curr. Biol. 26:1-6.
  • Brelsford, A., Dufresnes, C., and N. Perrin. 2016. Trans-species variation in Dmrt1 is associated with sex determination in four European tree-frog species. Evolution 70: 840-847
  • Brelsford, A., Dufresnes, C., and N. Perrin. 2016. High-density sex-specific linkage maps of a European tree frog (Hyla arborea) identify the sex chromosome without information on offspring sex. Heredity 116: 177-181.
  • Purcell, J. L., Brelsford, A., Wurm, Y., Perrin, N., and M. Chapuisat. 2014. Convergent genetic architecture of social organization in ants. Curr. Biol. 24: 2728-2732.
  • Brelsford, A., Stöck, M., Betto-Colliard, C., Dubey, S., Dufresnes, C., Jourdan-Pineau, H., Rodrigues, N., Savary, R., Sermier, R., Perrin, N. Homologous sex chromosomes in three deeply divergent anuran species. 2013. Evolution 67: 2434-2440.
  • Toews, D. P. L. and A. Brelsford. 2012. The biogeography of mitochondrial and nuclear discordance in animals. Mol. Ecol. 21: 3907-3930.
  • Brelsford, A., B. Milá, and D. E. Irwin. 2011. Hybrid origin of Audubon’s warbler. Mol. Ecol. 20: 2380-2389.
  • Brelsford, A., and D. E. Irwin. 2009. Incipient speciation despite little assortative mating: the yellow-rumped warbler hybrid zone. Evolution 63: 3050-3060.

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