Current members

Principal Investigator

DJB2David Begun
Email: djbegun at ucdavis dot edu
Faculty webpage link
Grad Group Affiliations:
Population Biology
Integrated Genetics and Genomics
My research interests focus primarily on population genetics and molecular evolution in the Drosophila model. We use genomic approaches to investigate the forces affecting the distribution of genomic variation and to generate hypotheses on the biological traits influenced by directional selection.


Project Scientist


Julie Cridland
Email: jmcridland at ucdavis dot edu
Julie has several interests in Drosophila evolutionary genetics, including transposable element population biology, the evolution of gene expression, and the gain and loss of genes.


Postdoctoral Fellow


Didem Sarikaya
Email: dpsarikaya at ucdavis dot edu
Website link
Didem is an evolutionary developmental biologist who spends a lot of time wondering about the genes/processes that determine sizes of animals and organs. She is studying population-level variants of growth-regulating genes, and how they impact growth and adult health.


Graduate Students


Colin Contino

Email: cecontino at ucdavis dot edu
Colin is interested in studying how spatially varying selection shapes genome and expression variation in Drosophila populations.



Alex Majane 

Email: acmajane at ucdavis dot edu

Alex has many interests within evolutionary genomics, and his PhD work focuses on how traits related to sex and mating systems evolve across a range of time scales. When he’s not in the lab or at his computer, Alex is probably riding a bike on the roads around Davis or off on the dirt somewhere in the mountains.

Lab Manager

HSHayley Sheehy
Email:hksheehy at ucdavis dot edu
Hayley is our lab manager. She participates in pretty much every research direction in the lab. She also supervises all fly stock maintenance (and we sure have lots of stocks!).


Undergraduate researchers

Dawn Reynolds

Dawn is interested in several fields including genetics and expression patterns, selection pressures and evolution, developmental biology, physiology and stress response, and connecting these topics to a broader ecological context as well as applying them to a conservation and policy framework.

Katherine Rickelton 

Katie is interested in research projects regarding evolutionary genetics, population biology, and adaptive responses to climate change. She currently works with Didem on studying population differences in cell signaling and how that relates to overall health in Drosophila.