Dept. of Molecular Biosciences The University of Texas at Austin

Howard Ochman

Howard Ochman

Professor, Department of Molecular Biosciences

We apply experimental, comparative and computational approaches to investigate the factors contributing to the evolution of bacterial genomes and microbial communities. Some of our current projects investigate:

The role of adaptive and non-adaptive processes in bacterial genome evolution
The causes and consequences of genome reduction in bacterial pathogens
The origins of new genes and functional complexity
The microbial community diversity residing in Great Ape hosts

Academic History

Professional History

Awards and Honors

Current Research Support

Scientific Activities

Dissertations Directed

Recent Publications (last three years)

Edwards O., G. Jander, H. Ochman, R. Schuurink, and K. B. Singh (2022) Insects co-opt host genes to overcome plant defences. Fac Rev. 11(10). doi: 10.12703/r-01-000007

Kirchberger P. C., Z. A. Martinez, and H. Ochman (2022) Organizing the Global Diversity of Microviruses. mBio 13(3):e0058822. doi: 10.1128/mbio.00588-22

Nishida A.H. and H. Ochman (2021) Captivity and the co-diversification of great ape microbiomes. Nat Commun. 12(1):5632. doi: 10.1038/s41467-021-25732-y.

Kirchberger P.C. , Z. A. Martinez, L. J. Luker, and H. Ochman (2021) Defensive hypervariable regions confer superinfection exclusion in microviruses. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A . 118(28) e2102786118. doi: 10.1073/pnas.2102786118

Li Y., A. C. O'Donnell, and H. Ochman (2021) Discriminating arboviral species. J Gen Virol. 102(4). doi: 10.1099/jgv.0.001572

Bobay L. M., A. C. O'Donnell, and H. Ochman (2021) Recombination events are concentrated in the spike protein region of Betacoronaviruses. PLoS Genet. 16(12):e1009272. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1009272.

Kirchberger P. C., M. Schmidt, and H. Ochman (2020) The Ingenuity of Bacterial Genomes. Annu Rev Microbiol. 74:815-834.. doi: 10.1146/annurev-micro-020518-115822

Kirchberger P. C. and H. Ochman (2020) Resurrection of a Global, Metagenomically Defined Gokushovirus. eLife 9:e51599 doi: 10.7554/eLife.51599