Dr. N.G. Prasad
Professor, Biological Sciences

Email prasad(AT)iisermohali.ac.in
Phone +91 172 2293170
Fax +91 172 2240266
Personal Page
Research Area
Evolutionary Genetics
Research Focus

We work in the broad area of Evolutionary Genetics. Our special interests lies in understanding the co-evolution between males and females in a species. In promiscuous species, the correlation for fitness between males and females is less than one. Thus, males and females can potentially evolve traits that increase their own Darwinian fitness but harm the fitness of the other sex. This leads to open-ended cycles of adaptation and counter adaptation - a form of intra-species Red Queen process - often called Intersexual Conflict. Such antagonistic co-evolution between sexes has been suggested to drive rapid divergence between populations in their life-history and behaviour and act as an engine for speciation. The long term goal of our lab is to understand the interplay between sexual conflict, sexual selection and life-history evolution. Specifically, we are working on

Sexual conflict and Sexual Selection
Evolutionary Ecology of immunity
Life-History Evolution

We use Drosophila melanogaster as a model system. Our approaches include Experimental Evolution, Phenotypic manipulations as well as gene expression and molecular techniques. Our techniques allow us to follow the process of adaptive evolution in real time across replicate populations. More importantly, we can assess fitness and related traits under conditions that are meaningful to the populations.

Selected Publications

  • Nandy, B., Gupta V., Udaykumar, N., Samant, M., Sen, S. and Prasad, N.G. 2013. Evolution of mate-harm, longevity and behaviour in male fruit flies subjected to different levels of interlocus conflict. BMC Evolutionary Biology 13:212.
  • Gupta, V., Zeeshan, S. A. and Prasad, N. G. 2013. Sexual activity increases resistance against Pseudomonas entomophila in male Drosophila melanogaster. BMC Evolutionary Biology 13: 185.
  • Nandy, B., Vanika, G., Udaykumar, N., Samant, M. A., Sen, S. and Prasad, N.G. 2013. Experimental evolution of female traits under different levels of intersexual conflict in Drosophila melanogaster. Evolution doi:10.1111/evo.12271.
  • Imroze, K. and Prasad, N. G. 2013. Adaptive male mate choice in relation to female infection status in Drosophila melanogaster. Journal of Insect Physiology 59: 1017-1023. doi: 10.1016/j.jinsphys.2013.07.010
  • Nandy, B., Chakraborty, P., Ali, Z.S. and Prasad, N.G. 2013. Sperm competitive ability evolves in response to altered operational sex ratio. Evolution. doi:10.1111/evo.12076