Anne Bronikowski, PhD



Professor and Resident Faculty Member, Integrated Biology

Michigan State University



BS, Moleculary Biology / Mathematical Biology, Marquette University
MS, Evolutionary Biology, University of Chicago
PhD, Evolutionary Biology, University of Chicago

Research interest: My laboratory uses comparative genomics and physiology to address questions in aging biology using non-traditional models, especially reptiles. We take an integrated approach to work across several layers of biological organization–from cells, to individuals, to populations, and across different disciplines–genetics, demography, and physiology.  We have contributed to genomic resources for amniotes (as a member of genome consortia for turtles and snakes) and have used these genomes for discovery of molecular evolution across key aging molecular networks (i.e., the insulin-like signaling network (IIS) and the p53-DNA-damage-response network(DDR)). We have found rapid evolutionary changes in amino acid composition of key players in these networks (such as igf1igf1rigf2 in IIS, and p53mdm2 in the DDR network). We are currently validating the bioinformatic predictions of new function and new binding affinities within these networks. On the physiology side, we have found significant correlations among lifespan, DNA damage repair efficiencies, oxidative stress, and metabolic rates. Our results have challenged standing hypotheses for the mechanisms and evolution of aging by broadening the comparative landscape in which aging is studied.

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