People Detail

Faculty Biography For:

Timothy Cooper
Associate Professor
Ph.D., University of Canterbury, New Zealand, 2000.

Biology and Biochemistry Department
University of Houston
Houston, Texas 77204-5001

Office: SR2 353
Phone: (713)743-2552

My research interests center on understanding the processes underlying adaptive evolution. Using bacterial and computational experimental systems I aim to identify and integrate these mechanisms and examine how they depend on genetic and environmental factors.

Much of my work is based on experimental evolution  the lab-based study of evolving populations. This approach is multi-disciplinary, combining questions and techniques at molecular, organismal and ecosystem levels. We use experimental evolution to address questions including: what genetic changes allow bacteria adapt to novel environments? Do these changes have effects that depend on particular genetic backgrounds? What consequences does adaptation have on phenotypes such as robustness and evolvability? How does the relationship between genetic and phenotypic changes influence evolution?

Details can be found on my homepage.

Cooper TF, Remold SK, Lenski RE, Schneider D. (2008). Expression profiles reveal parallel evolution of epistatic interactions involving the CRP regulon in Escherichia coli. Plos Genetics, 4(2):e35.

Cooper TF. (2007). Recombination speeds adaptation by reducing competition between beneficial mutations in populations of Escherichia coli. PLoS Biol 5(9): e225

Cooper TF, Ostrowski EA and Travisano M. (2007). A negative relationship between mutation pleiotropy and fitness. Evolution 61: 1495-1499

Cooper TF, Morby AP, Gunn A and Schneider D. (2006) Effect of random and hub gene disruptions on environmental and mutational robustness in Escherichia coli. BMC Genomics 7:237

Cooper TF, Lenski RE, Elena SF. (2005). Parasites and mutational load: an experimental test of a pluralistic theory for the evolution of sex. Proceedings. Biological Sciences, 272(1560):311-7.

Rainey PB, Cooper TF. (2004). Evolution of bacterial diversity and the origins of modularity. Research In Microbiology,155(5):370-5.

Cooper TF, Rozen DR and Lenski RE. (2003). Parallel changes in gene expression after 20,000 generations of evolution in Escherichia coli. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 100: 1072-1077

Cooper TF and Heinemann JA. (2000). Postsegregational killing does not increase plasmid stability but acts to mediate the exclusion of competing plasmids. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 97: 12643-12648