The primary goal of my research is use high-throughput DNA sequencing technologies to better understand the patterns and drivers of marine biodiversity. This currently includes, but is not limited to, tropical benthic communities, sediment meiofauna, marine bacteria and environmental DNA (eDNA) from seawater. My work ranges from macroecology (studying spatial patterns of organisms ranging greatly in body size) to more methodological work (e.g. developing bioinformatic pipelines and assessing eDNA methods). My work focuses on extremely small or otherwise cryptic biodiversity that cannot be accurately or efficiently assessed visually. These organisms represent a large fraction of marine species that are often overlooked in favor of large, charismatic animals such as fishes or corals. In a broader context, my work aims to help fill in this knowledge gap and so that we can have a complete picture and thereby understanding of marine biodiversity.
B.S., Evolution, Ecology and Biodiversity, University of California, Davis, U.S.A., 2015
Hughes, Lily C., G.M. Somoza, B.N. Nguyen, J.P. Bernot, M. González‐Castro, J.M. Diaz de Astarloa, G. Ortí. (2017) "Transcriptomic differentiation underlying marine‐to‐freshwater transitions in the South American silversides Odontesthes argentinensis and O. bonariensis (Atheriniformes)." Ecology and evolution 7. 14: 5258-5268.