Jonathan Eisen studies the ecology and evolution of microbial communities -- and their co-evolution with their hosts.
Research in Jonathan Eisen's lab focuses on the “phylogenomics of novelty” in microbes. Among their major research themes are:
• the genomic basis for the origin and evolution of new functions
• the ecology and evolution of microbial communities
• the co-evolution of microbes and their carrying vessels (i.e., hosts)
• variation in “evolvability”
• the development of phylogeny driven computational tools to analyze genomic and metagenomic sequence data.
Eisen is also a strong proponent of the Open Access movement in scientific publishing and is Academic Editor in Chief of PLoS Biology. Dr. Eisen is also an active and award-winning science blogger on The Tree of Life. For recent news see @phylogenomics.
“What we need is a full field guide to the microbes that live in and on people, so that we can understand what they're doing to our lives. We are them; they are us.”
“Everybody focuses on the [microbes] that kill us.”
“We actually have 10 times as many cells of microbes on us as we have human cells. … We are literally a teeming ecosystem of microorganisms.”