Nalini Puniamoorthy

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Research Interests

I am interested in sexual selection and the role it plays in driving many of the morphological and physiological changes that ultimately lead to reproductive isolation. One focus lies primarily in the evolution of mating behaviour and the part it plays in driving speciation. My current research is based on a family of black scavenger flies known as the Sepsidae (Diptera). Sepsid flies are characterized by numerous sexual dimorphisms, like the starkly dimorphic male forelegs and genitalia. Thanks to their relatively short development times, these flies can be bred easily, and the function and evolution of their secondary sexual traits can be documented by studying the behaviour of various species and populations under laboratory conditions. With a recently well-resolved molecular phylogeny (Su et al. 2008), these flies are ideal for comparative studies investigating the evolution of morphology and behaviour.


Education and Professional Positions

2008 - 2013 Ph.D. thesis at the Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies, University of Zurich, Switzerland
2006 - 2008 M.Sc. in Biology, National University of Singapore, Singapore
2002 -2006 B.Sc. (Hons) in Life Sciences, National University of Singapore, Singapore
2005 -2006 Undergraduate Research Assistant, Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore, Singapore