Kirsten Bomblies

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Kirsten Bomblies is an American biological researcher. She was Thomas D. Cabot Associate Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University until 2015, and then moved her lab to the John Innes Centre in Norwich, UK. She was born in 1973 in Germany and grew up in Castle Rock, Colorado. She received her Bachelor of Arts in biochemistry and biology from The University of Pennsylvania in 1996. Her research focuses primarily on species in the Arabidopsis genus. She has studied processes related to speciation and hybrid incompatibility, and currently focuses on the adaptive evolution of meiosis in response to climate and genome change.

For her PhD with John Doebley at the University of Wisconsin - Madison, she studied extant domesticated Maize (called "Corn" colloquially in United States) with some study of Teosinte, its wild precursor. She examined how these plants as well as organisms in general develop to their extant form and function due to the influence of their component genes, proteins and other intrinsic and extrinsic forces.

As a postdoc with Detlef Weigel at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in Tuebingen, Germany, she began to study how individuals interact with other organisms and to examine selection forces within and across species boundaries, accessions, chronological gradients and other delineations. The work has an experimental component but the theoretical implications of the discoveries Bomblies and her colleagues made have received lots of attention. She was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 2008. She joined the faculty of Harvard University in July 2009 and the John Innes Centre in 2015. In her spare time she does nature themed watercolors and other art. She is married to Levi Yant.


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