Dr Katharina C Wollenberg Valero


Faculty of Science and Engineering


01482 465187

Dr Valero has a background in evolutionary genetics and a strong interest in interdisciplinary problem-solving.

Her current research seeks to understand the functional genomics of the organismal stress response, in the context of climate adaptation, climate change, and environment-disease relationships.


Research Interests

  • Comparative and functional genomics

  • Molecular evolution

  • Ecology and the environment

  • Bioinformatics

Research groups

  • PI of Odysys Lab (Organismal Dynamic Systems) within the School of Environmental Sciences

  • PI of the Molecular Stress in Changing Aquatic Environments cross-disciplinary research cluster between the schools of Environmental Sciences, Life Sciences, Engineering and Computer Science, and Mathematics and Physical Sciences

  • Co-I of Health GDP research cluster (with School of Life Sciences, PI Dr. Leonid Nikitenko)

  • Member of Evo Hull (Evolutionary and Environmental Genomics research group)


Rodríguez, A., Rusciano, T., Hamilton, R., Holmes, L., Jordan, D. and Wollenberg Valero, K.C., 2017. 'Genomic and phenotypic signatures of climate adaptation in an Anolis lizard'. Ecology and Evolution, 7(16), pp.6390-6403.

Wollenberg Valero, K.C., Garcia-Porta, J., Rodríguez, A., Arias, M., Shah, A., Randrianiaina, R.D., Brown, J.L., Glaw, F., Amat, F., Künzel, S. and Metzler, D., 2017. 'Transcriptomic and macroevolutionary evidence for phenotypic uncoupling between frog life history phases'. Nature Communications, 8.

Wollenberg, K.C., Wang, I.J., Glor, R.E. and Losos, J.B., 2013. 'Determinism in the diversification of Hispaniolan trunk‐ground anoles (Anolis cybotes species complex)'. Evolution, 67(11), pp.3175-3190.

Vences, M., Wollenberg, K.C., Vieites, D.R. and Lees, D.C., 2009. 'Madagascar as a model region of species diversification'. Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 24(8), pp.456-465.

Vieites, D.R., Wollenberg, K.C., Andreone, F., Köhler, J., Glaw, F. and Vences, M., 2009. 'Vast underestimation of Madagascar's biodiversity evidenced by an integrative amphibian inventory'. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106(20), pp.8267-8272.

Full list


Programmes taught on (2019)

Modules list

  • Principles of Genetics

  • Genetic Analysis

  • Cells and Organelles

  • Reviews in Biology

Research PhDs

Applications from prospective PhD, MSc by Research (MRes) students or research fellows are welcome at any time. In particular, expressions of interest and applications in the following areas of research are invited:

  • Molecular stress and molecular adaptation

  • Organismal adaptation to climate change

  • Evolutionary inference using genomic and transcriptomic data

  • Interdisciplinary research intersecting genetics, bioinformatics, modelling and fieldwork in any combination

  • Comparative projects focusing on vertebrate ectotherms (fish, reptiles, amphibians)

  • Quantitative expertise development in STEM education

Professional highlights

Academic qualifications

  • Dr.rer.nat in Evolutionary Biology, Summa cum laude, Braunschweig University of Technology, Germany

  • Dipl. Biol. in Biology, University of Mainz, Germany

Awards and accolades

  • Co-I. on US National Science Foundation HBCU-UP Targeted Infusion Project, “QEUBIC – Quantitative Expertise in the Undergraduate Biology Curriculum” #1435186

  • Co-I. on Supplement grant, US National Science Foundation, 'Enhancing quantitative Expertise in the Undergraduate Biology Curriculum (QEUBIC) by targeting the first two years of College Mathematics'

  • P.I. on three year postdoctoral research fellowship of Volkswagen Foundation. A multidimensional approach to infer the role of landscape in lineage diversification

  • R. J. H. Hintelmann Scientific Award for Zoological Systematics

  • P.I. on SYNTHESYS grant for systematic research (EU-funded)

  • P.I. on Systematics Research Fund of the Systematics Association and the Linnean Society of London