Douglas Brash

Douglas Brash's picture
Prof Ther Radiology, Genetics & Dermatology; Clin Prof Ther Radiology
15 York St, New Haven, CT 06510-3221

My interest in evolutionary mechanisms was re-ignited as my lab worked out how sunlight drives the clonal expansion of p53-mutant keratinocytes, a process that involves selection pressures rather than additional mutations (PNAS 98:13948, 2001; 105:15034, 2008; 107:270, 2010). New projects include i) testing, in the cancer realm, Waddington’s genetic assimilation mechanism for rapidly evolving useful traits by converting environmentally-inducible traits into genetically-controlled ones and ii) revisiting the role of mutation rate in species evolution, which despite textbook claims to the contrary Fisher and Haldane did not say is irrelevant compared to selection pressure.