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Invited Speaker


Dr. Brendan J. Pinto, PhD, is an Assistant Research Professional at Arizona State University (ASU). He holds a Research Associate position at the Milwaukee Public Museum and serves both as the Early Career Counselor for the American Genetic Association and as an Associate Editor for its flagship publication, the Journal of Heredity. He is also the head organizer of the nascent “collaborative network of squamate genomicists,” whose goal is to extend collaboration of squamate genomics work across the globe (please get in touch with him about this, if interested). Brendan received his B.S. from Morningside College (Sioux City, IA USA) and Ph.D. in evolutionary genomics with Tony Gamble (Milwaukee, WI USA) on speciation and the evolution of sex chromosomes in gecko lizards (2020). After a brief postdoctoral stint at the University of Texas at Austin (2020-21), he has since made a home in the Center for Evolution and Medicine at ASU under Dr. Melissa Wilson (2021-present). Through collaboration, he has participated and led research projects investigating speciation and population genetics across amniotes, genomic signatures of shifting diel activity in squamates, and sex determination across nearly the entire breadth of animal diversity, from bivalve mollusks to mammals. Currently, he is working alongside Dr. Wilson continuing this work and expanding within the squamate tree of life to anguimorph lizards, including the Gila monster and its relatives.

Title: Genome Biology of the Gila monster

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