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  • S. Blair Hedges
  • Carnell Professor
  • Director, Center for Biodiversity
  • Department of Biology
S. Blair Hedges
We use genetics and genomics to explore the patterns and mechanisms that have shaped the tree of life, from its origin to the present. These include speciation, extinction, diversification, biogeography, and the multi-dimensional evolution of biodiversity.

We are especially interested in how the planetary environment has impacted the evolution of life, such as in continental drift, sea level variation, and climatic change, as well as the impact of deforestation on current species. We often use time-calibrated phylogenies (timetrees) to address these questions.

Most of my current "global" analyses bring data together in new ways, involving bioinformatics and programming, although I continue to maintain a molecular biology laboratory for targeted data collection, and a biodiversity field program.Biological disciplines represented in the research include astrobiology, biodiversity, bioinformatics, conservation, ecology, genomics, molecular evolution, natural history, paleontology, phylogenetics, and systematics. Other disciplines represented are astronomy, climatology, and geology.