The College of Natural Sciences at The University of Texas at Austin
The University of Texas at Austin

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Jeffrey Barrick
Assistant Professor, Dept. of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Main Office: MBB 1.436BA
Phone: 471-3247

Alternate Office: MBB 1.436
Alt. Phone: 471-5568

Mailing Address
Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology
The University of Texas at Austin
1 University Station
Austin ,TX 78712

Jeffrey Barrick

Research Summary

My laboratory uses experiments with populations of microorganisms, nucleic acids, and digital organisms to study evolution in action with the ultimate goal of harnessing evolution as a creative force for synthetic biology. To ask how different types of mutations impact evolutionary potential, we are using deep sequencing to monitor the competitive dynamics of spontaneous beneficial mutations in these populations and also engineering specific genomic changes. Molecular biology and biochemistry approaches are used to link the cell physiological effects of mutations to how they affect competitive fitness at the organism level, and bioinformatics and comparative genomics are used to investigate whether similar mutational pathways are important in nature. Other research interests include investigating the functions of cryptic genomic elements and using mark-recapture techniques on microbial genomes to watch them as they evolve in complex wild and pathogenic populations.



Bio Sci students