Robert B. Page, Ph.D.
Ph.D., Biology, University of Kentucky
M.S., Biology, University of Louisiana at Lafayette
B.S., Biology, Piedmont College
Assistant Professor of Biology
Central Academic Building 351J
Office (210) 784-2267
The application of genomic and genetic tools to problems in ecology, evolution, and conservation is of special interest to me. Technological advances in DNA sequencing have made it possible to generate vast amounts of genetic data on non-model organisms. This approach is exciting to me because it enables a mechanistic understanding of evolutionary and organismal processes from a variety of perspectives that add to and complement the perspectives provided by classical model systems (e.g., Drosophila melanogaster, Xenopus laevis, Arabodopsis thaliana). Because of their scale and complexity, genomic datasets often require advanced analyses before they can be interpreted. Thus, I also maintain interests in statistical computing and bioinformatics. I am actively pursuing research in population and conservation genetics. However, I also have a strong background in functional genomics, and I am interested in developing collaborations in this area.
Currently, I am involved in several projects that are using population genetic approaches to address questions in conservation biology. For example, in collaboration with others, I have developed genetic resources for the Argentine Black & White tegu and we are using these markers to gain insight into the introduction histories of invasive tegu populations in Florida. As another example of ongoing population genetics work, I have developed approximately two-dozen microsatellite markers for the red-backed salamander, Plethodon cinereus. At present, these markers are being used to assess the effects of urbanization on gene flow in the greater Cleveland area and to examine the degree of differentiation between populations that exhibit ecologically relevant phenotypic differences.
The genetic resources mentioned above were all developed from genomic shotgun sequence libraries that were obtained via next generation sequencing. In addition to salamander and tegu libraries, I have also generated genomic libraries from several other species, and I am interested in using these datasets to address questions in comparative genomics. I am always looking for students and collaborators to work with, so if you are interested in working on a project in these areas, or if you think I may be able to contribute to a project you are working on, please contact me via email.