- Evolution of animal body plans
- Molecular Palaeobiology
- Evolutionary Developmental Biology
Dr. Jeff Thompson is broadly interested in understanding the patterns and processes that have underlain the generation of the vast biodiversity we see on planet earth today. Trained as a geologist and palaeobiologist at The Ohio State University, he completed his PhD at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. It was during his PhD that he first became interested in the role of animal development in shaping evolutionary change. He undertook a postdoctoral position at Baylor University, continuing his work on the fossil record working to understand the impact of the end-Permian mass extinction on ancient biodiversity. In order to gain familiarity using the analytical approaches and techniques of developmental biology, he undertook a Newton International Fellowship at University College London, where he began working on gene expression udnerlying skeletogenesis in echinoderms. After a short position at The Natural History Museum in London, he has come to Southampton as a Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellow and Lecturer in Evolutionary Developmental Biology where he seeks to blend data from the fossil record and animal development to gain an interdisciplinary view of macroevolutionary processes shaping the history of life.