David L. Reed
Curator of Mammals

My work focuses on host/parasite coevolution. Lately, I’ve been driven by questions relating to the extent with which we can infer host evolutionary history simply by studying their host-specific parasites. For example, human head and body lice show a population expansion coinciding with that of their modern human hosts about 100,000 years ago. Might we be able to use human lice to learn more about human migrations such as the Peopling of the Americas?

This interest has led to new studies of co-demography and DNA sequence simulations that permit us to determine how human parasites have responded to their human hosts.

Verity Mathis
Lab Manager/Mammal Collections Manager
Verity Mathis






Aida Miró-Herrans, PhD

Postdoctoral Researcher

Aida Miro

Broadly, my research explores how human interactions, with each other and the environment, shape their evolutionary history during migration. I combine some of the most recent methodological advances in modern and ancient DNA and computational analyses​ to reconstruct the evolutionary processes and interactions that have shaped human populations. My research has focused on studying the genetic diversity of human populations in the Arabian Peninsula and the Americas, the two regions of the world with the earliest and most recent peoplingevents, respectively. My current research studies human and human head louse (P. humanus) co-evolution to identify interactions that modern humans may have had with archaic hominin species.