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Current Lab Members

Dr. Jamie Walters, P.I.

Assistant Professor
Ecology & Evolutionary Biology


See Jamie's webpage


Melissa Plakke

Post-doctoral Fellow



See Melissa's Website

Jasmin Pimsupa

Undergraduate Student

Researching pollenation ecology in  lepidopteran species using local and historical samples.

Walters Lab Gathering, Spring 2017:

From L to R: Aloy Gu, Dylan Sims-West, Jamie (kneeling), Andrew Mongue, Jordyn Koehn, Megan Hansen, Ayelle Walters (winged), Petr Nguyen, Anna Volenikova,  Nathan Stucky.


Katie McLaughlin

Graduate Student




Rachel Manweiler

Undergraduate Student

Researching sperm biology in Plodia moths and developing DNA extraction methods for the Oe monarch parasite.



Former undergraduate members


Thomas Johnson

Thomas is a gifted keeper of insects and devoted natural historian who also mastered many wet-lab techniques. In Fall 2020 Thomas started PhD in insect ecology & evolution at Syracuse University.


Dylan Sims-West

Dylan worked to analyze the biochemical nature of a pupal color mutation in monarch butterflies, and also generally supported a range of insect-rearing projects in the lab. After graduation Dylan become a lab technician in the MacDonald lab, and plans to attend graduate school in evolutionary genetics.


Jordyn Koehn

Jordyn was an essential organizer of people and projects in the lab, helping to rear large numbers of monarch butterflies in a controlled cross. She also pursued bioinformatic anayses of sperm proteomic data, receiving two KINBRE fellowships for this work. After KU, Jordyn entered a graduate progrom in Genetic Counseling.


Megan Hansen

Receiving a KINBRE STAR trainee fellowship, Megan pursued bioinformatic anlyses investigating the relationship between sperm protein and testes transcript abundance. Additionally, she did field work, helping to collect Manduca in North Carolina. After KU, Megan attended medical school.



Rachel Elting

REU 2018 REU student & KINBRE Fellow


Rachel performed bioinformatic analyses to identify W-linked PacBio sequencing reads Heliconius butterflies.


Ana Driscoll

REU 2018 REU student


Ana investigated the potential to use differential expression statistical pipelines to assess sex-linkage of transcripts using genomic resequencing data.


Derrick Harms

REU 2015 Summer student


An undergraduate from Kansas University, Derrick worked during summer 2015 assembling transcriptome data from Heliconius melpomene


Jeff Cole

REU 2015 Summer student


An undergraduate from Samford College, Jeff worked during summer 2015 to analyze the molecular evolution of Monarch butterfly sperm proteins.


Danny Thiesen

Spring 2015 undergraduate researcher


From Kansas University, Danny collected data on antioxidation capacity of several tissues in Monarch butterflies.


Margaret Stratton

REU 2014 Summer student


An undergraduate from Tufts University, Margaret worked during summer 2014 identifying W-linked sequences in Manduca sexta


Channing Shives

Undergraduate student


Channing is working on bioinformatic analysis of spermatophore proteins.  She also assists with maintaining butterfly cultures and collection of reproductive tissues.

Former graduate students and

senior researchers


Desiree Harpel

Graduate Student



See Desiree's webpage


Tim Karr

Visiting Scholar



See Tim's webpage


Chris Hamm

Post-doctoral Scholar



See Chris's webpage


Petr Nguyen

Petr is a Fulbright visiting scholar from the Czech Republic researching Lepidopteran sex chromosome evolution in Yponomeuta moths


Anna Volenikova

Anna is a Fulbright visiting scholar from the Czech Republic researching Lepidopteran sex chromosome evolution in Hepialid moths


Luiqi (Aloy) Gu

Post-doctoral Scholar


See Aloy's webpage



Andrew Mongue

Graduate Student



See Andrew's webpage

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