Thomas Werner shares his knowledge about the most beautiful butterflies, moths, and fruit fly species and we’ll learn much more about his work in Encyclopedia of North American Drosophilids

Dr. Thomas Werner
Butterly or moth?

He started his presentation from his background as a biologist by heart. Dr. Werner started studying insects as a childhood hobby, at age 10, when a beautiful butterfly flew in the window of his family’s 9th floor apartment in Erfurt, in East Germany. Many years later, his interest in insects is still strong, as he leads a fruit fly research lab at Michigan Tech. 

Werner’s research bridges the miniscule and the massive in an effort to better understand the mechanisms behind several unique features of fruit flies, such as the developmental genetics of color pattern formation as well as those of mushroom toxin resistance, among several other questions. Some of their research questions aim to provide insight into human cancer development.

Werner also teaches courses on general immunology, introduction to genomics, developmental biology, and he used to teach genetics and with a genetic techniques lab. He’s been bestowed with the state-wide Michigan Distinguished Professor of the Year Award 2021 and won Michigan Technological University’s Distinguished Teaching Award twice (both in the non-tenured and the tenured categories).

He moved his family to Houghton 12 years ago: with Megan, a daughter Natalia (11), and two sons: Oliver (8) and Oscar (6).

More about Thomas can be read in this page.
For being so small, fruit flies have had a large impact on genetic research

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