Michael T.J. Hague, PhD
University of Montana
Department of Biological Sciences
32 Campus Drive
Missoula, MT 59812
The ecological interactions among species represent a major source of biodiversity. My research explores how (co)evolution shapes interactions between species like host and symbiont or predator and prey. Broadly, I am interested in how interactions at the molecular and cellular levels dictate broader patterns of coevolution among populations and species. I recently started new research as a postdoc in the Cooper lab at the University of Montana studying coevolution between the endosymbiont Wolbachia and its Drosophila host species. Wolbachia bacteria are ubiquitous, infecting the cells of about half of all insects species on earth. I am interested in how interactions between Wolbachia, their host species, and the environment dictate the spread of infection among insects. Stay tuned for new research!
My dissertation in the Brodie lab examined adaptation in the coevolutionary arms race between the common garter snake (Thamnophis sirtalis) and its toxic prey, the Pacific newt (Taricha spp.). The project explored how molecular evolution, gene flow, and historical biogeography impact adaptation at the interface of prey toxins and predator resistance.