Moran Lab Research

green and pink pea aphids

My long-term interests are in the biology of symbiosis, particularly that between multicellular hosts and microbes. Symbioses are central in the evolution of complexity, have evolved many times and are critical to the lifestyles of many animals and plants and also to whole ecosystems, in which symbiotic organisms are key players. The primary reason that symbiosis research is suddenly active, after decades at the margins of mainstream biology, is that DNA technology and genomics give us enormous new ability to discover symbiont diversity, and more significantly, to reveal how microbial metabolic capabilities contribute to the functioning of hosts and biological communities.

> Read More


  • Amanda Tristão Santini joins the lab as a Visiting Researcher. Amanda is a graduate student at the Universidade Federal de Viçosa in Brazil (March 2023)
  • Congratulations to postdoc PJ Lariviere on being awarded a 2-year USDA/NIFA Postdoctoral Fellowship. (March 2023)
  • Congratulations to Nancy Moran on receiving the 2023 Selman A. Waksman Award in Microbiology from the National Academy of Sciences. (January 2023)