Deborah Charlesworth

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Deborah Charlesworth

BornMarch 1943 (age 77)
Alma materUniversity of Cambridge
(m. 1967)
Children1 daughter
AwardsGenetics Society Medal (2019)
Scientific career
FieldsEvolutionary biology
ThesisBiometrical studies of some biochemical characters in the mouse (1969)
Doctoral studentsPhilip Awadalla
Other notable studentsGilean McVean (postdoc)

Deborah Charlesworth FRS FRSE (née Maltby; born 1943) is a British evolutionary biologist.[1]

Charlesworth received a PhD in genetics from Cambridge University in 1968, and did postdoctoral work at Cambridge, the University of Chicago, and Liverpool University. She taught at the University of Chicago from 1988–1997, leaving to take up a Professorial Research Fellowship at the University of Edinburgh.[2] She is best known for her work on the evolution of genetic self-incompatibility in plants and is recognised as a leader in that field. According to the Web of Science she has published over 300 articles in peer-reviewed journals. These articles have been cited over 10,000 times and she has an h-index of 53.[3] She has been married since 1967 to the British evolutionary biologist Brian Charlesworth.

Awards and honours[edit]

Charlesworth was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2001[1] and a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 2005[4] Charlesworth was awarded the Genetics Society Medal 2019.[5] She was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Society for the Study of evolution in January 2020.[6]

Selected publications[edit]

  • Charlesworth, D,Wright, SI. (2001) Breeding systems and genome evolution. Current Opinion in Genetics & Development 11, 685–690.
  • Jesper S. Bechsgaard, Vincent Castric, Deborah Charlesworth, Xavier Vekemans, Mikkel H. Schierup. 2006. The transition to self-compatibility in Arabidopsis thaliana and evolution within S-haplotypes over 10 million years. Molecular Biology and Evolution 23: 1741–1750.
  • Asher D. Cutter, Scott E. Baird and Deborah Charlesworth. 2006 Patterns of nucleotide polymorphism and the decay of linkage disequilibrium in wild populations of Caenorhabditis remanei. Genetics 174: 901–913.
  • Bergero, R., A. Forrest, E. Kamau, and D. Charlesworth. 2007. Evolutionary strata on the X chromosomes of the dioecious plant Silene latifolia: evidence from new sex-linked genes. Genetics 175:1945-1954.
  • D. Charlesworth 2006 Balancing selection and its effects on sequences in nearby genome regions. PLoS Genetics 2: e64 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.0020064.
  • S. Qiu, R. Bergero, A. Forrest, V. Kaiser, D. Charlesworth 2010 Nucleotide diversity in Silene latifolia autosomal and sex-linked genes. Proceedings of the Royal Soc. 277: 3283-3290 (doi:10.1098/rspb.2010.0606).
  • Bergero, R., and D. Charlesworth, 2011 Preservation of the Y transcriptome in a 10MY old plant sex chromosome system. Current Biology 21: 1470–1474.
  • Jordan, C., and D. Charlesworth, 2012 The potential for sexually antagonistic polymorphism in different genome regions. Evolution 66: 505–516. DOI: 10.1111/j.1558-5646.2011.01448.x[7]


  1. ^ a b Mable, Barbara; Hill Bill (February 2008). "Deborah Charlesworth". Genet. Res. 90 (1): 1. doi:10.1017/S0016672307009093. PMID 18509956. Retrieved 24 August 2008.
  2. ^ "Biological Sciences". The University of Edinburgh.
  3. ^ "Web of Science". 2008. Retrieved 24 August 2008.
  4. ^ "EC/1991/08: Charlesworth, Deborah". The Royal Society.
  5. ^ "Genetics Society".
  6. ^ "Awards & Grants: 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient". Society for the Study of Evolution. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  7. ^ "People".


  • Introduction to Plant Population Biology (with Jonathan W Silvertown) ISBN 0-632-04991-X
  • Evolution: A Very Short Introduction (with Brian Charlesworth) OUP ISBN 0-19-280251-8

External links[edit]