Armand Marie Leroi

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Armand Leroi
Born (1964-07-16) July 16, 1964 (age 50)[citation needed]
Fields Evolutionary biology[1][2][3]
Institutions Imperial College London
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
University of California, Irvine
Dalhousie University
Alma mater Dalhousie University (undergraduate)
University of California, Irvine (postgraduate)
Thesis The origin and evolution of life history trade-offs (1993)
Doctoral advisor Michael R. Rose[4]
Doctoral students Chris Knight[5]

Armand Marie Leroi (born 16 July 1964 in Wellington, New Zealand) is an author, broadcaster, and professor of evolutionary developmental biology at Imperial College in London.[6]


A Dutch citizen, his youth was spent in New Zealand, South Africa and Canada. He was awarded a Bachelor of Science degree by Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada in 1989, and a Ph.D. by the University of California, Irvine in 1993.[4] This was followed by postdoctoral work at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as an experimental organism.


In 2001, he was appointed lecturer at Imperial College London. He has written several books, including Mutants: On Genetic Variety and the Human Body[7][8] for which he was awarded the Guardian First Book Award in 2004. In 2004 he adapted his book into a television documentary series for Britain' Channel 4 entitled Human Mutants.[9]

Leroi has presented two other TV documentary series for Channel 4: "Alien Worlds" in 2005 and "What Makes Us Human" in 2006. Despite his TV appearances, Leroi has expressed scepticism about the truthfulness of television creatives. In an email exchange with TV director Martin Durkin, concerning the latter's documentary The Great Global Warming Swindle, Leroi wrote: "left to their own devices, TV producers simply cannot be trusted to tell the truth".[10]

He is also known as one of the first testers of the beneficial acclimation hypothesis. In 2005, Leroi published an article in the New York Times entitled "A Family Tree in Every Gene",[11] which argued for the usefulness of racial types in medical genetics.

It was found during the making of "What Makes Us Human" that his ASPM gene locus is heterozygous. That is to say, he has one copy of the recent variant and one copy of the old ASPM allele.

In January 2009 Leroi presented the BBC4 documentary What Darwin Didn't Know, which charts the progress in the field of Evolutionary Theory since the original publication of On the Origin of Species in 1859.

In January 2010 Leroi presented the BBC4 documentary Aristotle's Lagoon, filmed on the Greek island of Lesvos and suggesting that Aristotle was the world's first scientist and biologist.


Mutants: On Genetic Variety and the Human Body (Viking/Penguin)
The Lagoon: How Aristotle Invented Science (Viking, 9/25/2014)


  1. ^ Chippindale, A. K.; Leroi, A. M.; Kim, S. B.; Rose, M. R. (1993). "Phenotypic plasticity and selection in Drosophila life-history evolution. I. Nutrition and the cost of reproduction". Journal of Evolutionary Biology 6 (2): 171. doi:10.1046/j.1420-9101.1993.6020171.x.  edit
  2. ^ Leroi, A. M.; Bennett, A. F.; Lenski, R. E. (1994). "Temperature acclimation and competitive fitness: An experimental test of the beneficial acclimation assumption". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 91 (5): 1917. doi:10.1073/pnas.91.5.1917.  edit
  3. ^ Lauder, G. V.; Leroi, A. M.; Rose, M. R. (1993). "Adaptations and history". Trends in Ecology & Evolution 8 (8): 294. doi:10.1016/0169-5347(93)90258-Q.  edit
  4. ^ a b Leroi, Armand (1993). The origin and evolution of life history trade-offs (PhD thesis). University of California Irvine. 
  5. ^ Knight, Christopher Gregory (2001). The genetics and evolution of body size in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans (PhD thesis). Imperial College London. 
  6. ^ List of publications from Microsoft Academic Search
  7. ^ Armand Marie Leroi (2005). Mutants: on the form, varieties and errors of the human body. New York, N.Y: Harper Perennial. ISBN 0-00-653164-4. 
  8. ^ "Mutants by Armand Marie Leroi - Reviews - Books". The Independent. 2004-06-22. Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  9. ^ Armand Leroi at the Internet Movie Database
  10. ^ "durkinemails.htm". 2007-03-09. Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  11. ^ New York Times, retrieved 2009-09-30