Rolf Lohaus





VIB / Ghent University

Evolutionary Systems Biology

Technologiepark 927

B-9052 Gent



* co-first author

(13) Wan, T.*, Liu, Z.-M.*, Li, L.-F.*, Leitch, A.R.*, Leitch, I.J.*, Lohaus, R., Liu, Z.-J.*, Xin, H.-P., Gong, Y.-B., Liu, Y., et al. (2018) A genome for gnetophytes and early evolution of seed plants. Nature Plants 4: 82-89.

(12) Unver, T*., Wu, Z.*, Sterck, L., Turktas, M., Lohaus, R., Li, Z., Yang, M., He, L., Deng, T., Escalante, F.J., et al. (2017)  Genome of wild olive and the evolution of oil biosynthesis. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 114: E9413-E9422.

(11) Zhang, G.-Q.*, Liu, K.-W.*, Li, Z.*, Lohaus, R.*, Hsiao, Y.-Y.*, Niu, S.-C., Wang, J.-Y., Fujiwara, S., Lin, Y.-C., Xu, Q., et al. (2017) The Apostasia genome and the evolution of orchids. Nature 549: 379-383.

(10) Roodt, D., Lohaus, R., Sterck, L., Swanepoel, R.L., Van de Peer, Y., Mizrachi, E. (2017) Evidence for an ancient whole genome duplication in the cycad lineage. PLOS ONE 12: e0184454.

(9) Ruprecht, C.*, Lohaus, R.*, Vanneste, K., Mutwil, M., Nikoloski, Z., Van de Peer, Y., Persson, S. (2017) Revisiting ancestral polyploidy in plants. Science Advances 3: e1603195.

(8) Lohaus, R., Van de Peer, Y. (2016) Of dups and dinos: evolution at the K/Pg boundary. Current Opinion in Plant Biology 30: 62-69.

(7) Olsen, J.L., Rouzé, P., Verhelst, B., Lin, Y.-C., Bayer, T., Collen, J., Dattolo, E., De Paoli, E., Dittami, S., Maumus, F., et al. (2016) The genome of the seagrass Zostera marina reveals angiosperm adaptation to the sea. Nature 530: 331-335.

(6) Geard, N.L., Bullock, S., Lohaus, R., Azevedo, R.B.R., Wiles, J. (2011) Developmental motifs reveal complex structure in cell lineages. Complexity 16: 48-57.

(5) Lohaus, R., Burch, C.L., Azevedo, R.B.R. (2010) Genetic architecture and the evolution of sex. Journal of Heredity 101: S142-S157.

(4) Azevedo, R.B.R., Lohaus, R., Paixão, T. (2008) Networking networks. Evolution & Development 10: 514-515.

(3) Lohaus, R., Geard, N.L., Wiles, J., Azevedo, R.B.R. (2007) A generative bias towards average complexity in artificial cell lineages. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 274: 1741-1750.

(2) Azevedo, R.B.R., Lohaus, R., Srinivasan, S., Dang, K.K., Burch, C.L. (2006) Sexual reproduction selects for robustness and negative epistasis in artificial gene networks. Nature 440: 87-90.

(1) Azevedo, R.B.R., Lohaus, R., Braun, V., Gumbel, M., Umamaheshwar, M., Agapow, P.M., Houthoofd, W., Platzer, U., Borgonie, G., Meinzer, H.P., Leroi, A.M. (2005) The simplicity of metazoan cell lineages. Nature 433: 152-156.

My research interests are broadly centered on one of the big knowledge gaps in modern biology: the relationship between genotype and phenotype, i.e., the genetic architecture and developmental & molecular processes underlying phenotypes and their variation. The advances in genomics, molecular genetics and developmental biology over the last decades have uncovered an incredible amount of genomic and developmental complexities that govern this relationship. Understanding these complexities and their effects is crucial to our understanding of many important biological processes, such as genetic disease, aging, survival of small, endangered populations, speciation, or the evolution of sex. I am interested in how the complexity of this relationship affects phenotypic evolution and in how the genotype-phenotype map itself evolves. To study these questions I have been using computational models (e.g., models of gene networks and developmental systems) and population-based evolutionary simulations. Recently, I have been focusing my research on one of the most significant mechanisms influencing genomic complexity, gene and whole-genome duplications, and their effects on phenotypic evolution.

2013 - Present    Postdoctoral Researcher, VIB-UGent Center for Plant Systems

                            Biology, Ghent University, Belgium

2010-2012    Huxley Faculty Fellow, Department of Ecology & Evolutionary

                            Biology, Rice University, USA

2009                    PhD in Cell & Molecular Biology, Department of Biology &

                            Biochemistry, University of Houston, USA

2002 - 2004    Scientific Assistant, DKFZ (German Cancer Research Center),


2003                    MSc in Medical Informatics, University of Heidelberg, Germany