Home /
Office Phone: 67697
Office Address: Jinguang Life Science Building,Peking University, No.5 Yiheyuan Road, Haidian District,Beijing, P.R.China 100871
Lab Phone: 67697
Lab Address: Jinguang Life Science Building,Peking University, No.5 Yiheyuan Road, Haidian District,Beijing, P.R.China 100871
Lab Homepage: http://
Personal Homepage: http://
2005 BS in Biotechnology, Shandong University, China
2011 PhD in Botany, Peking University, China
Professional Experience
2018-present Principal Investigator, School of Life Sciences, Peking University
2018-present Principal Investigator, Peking-Tsinghua Center for Life Sciences, Peking University
2012-2017 Postdoctoral Scholar, Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Chicago
2017 Postdoctoral Scholar, Department of Pediatrics, University of Chicago
Research Interests
Our research tackles some fundamental evolutionary questions such as speciation, adaptation, and introgression. In particular, our work focuses on integrating experimental and computational approaches to study adaptive introgression in model and non-model organisms. Our research interests also include investigating anti-predator adaptation such as mimicry, aposematic coloration, and camouflage in insects.
Representative Peer-Reviewed Publications
(* equal contribution, # corresponding author)
Zhang W, Westerman E, Nitzany E, Palmer S, Kronforst MR. Tracing the origin and evolution of supergene mimicry in butterflies. Nature Communications. 2017 Nov 7;8(1):1269.
Zhang W#, Dasmahapatra KK, Mallet J, Moreira GR, Kronforst MR#. Genome-wide introgression among distantly related Heliconius butterfly species. Genome Biology, 2016 Feb 27;17(1):25.
Li X*, Fan D*, Zhang W*, Liu G*, Zhang L*, Zhao L, Fang X, Chen L, Dong Y, Chen Y, Ding Y, Zhao R, Feng M, Zhu Y, Feng Y, Jiang X, Zhu D, Xiang H, Feng X, Li S, Wang J, Zhang G, Kronforst MR#, Wang W#. Outbred genome sequencing and CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing in butterflies. Nature Communications. 2015 Sep 10;6:8212.
Kunte K*#, Zhang W*, Tenger-Trolander A, Palmer D, Martin A, Reed RD, Mullen SP, Kronforst MR#. doublesex is a mimicry supergene. Nature. 2014 Mar 13;507(7491):229-32.
Zhang W, Kunte K, Kronforst M. R. Genome-wide characterization of adaptation and speciation in tiger swallowtail butterflies using de novo transcriptome assemblies. Genome Biology and Evolution. 2013 5:1233-1245.
Zhan S#, Zhang W, Niitepold K, Hsu J, Fernández Haeger J, Zalucki M, Altizer S, De Roode J, Reppert S, Kronforst MR#. The genetics of monarch butterfly migration and warning colouration. Nature. 2014 Oct 16;514(7522):317-21.
Nallu S, Hill JA, Don K, Sahagun C, Zhang W, Meslin C, Snell-Rood E, Clark NL, Morehouse NI, Bergelson J, Wheat CW, Kronforst MR. Westerman E, Nitzany E, Palmer S, Kronforst MR#. The molecular genetic basis of herbivory between butterflies and their host-plants. Nature Ecology and Evolution. 2018 Aug 3. doi: 10.1038/s41559-018-0629-9.
Westerman E*, VanKuren N*, Massardo D, Tanger-Trolander A, Zhang W, Hill RI, Perry M, Bayala E, Barr K, Chamberlain N, Douglas TE, Buerkle N, Palmer S, Kronfost MR#. Aristaless controls butterfly wing color variation used in mimicry and mate choice. Current Biology. 2018 Nov 5;28(21):3469-3474.e4. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2018.08.051. Epub 2018 Oct 25.
Kronforst MR, Hansen MEB, Crawford NG, Gallant JR, Zhang W, Kulathinal RJ, Kapan DD, Mullen SP. Hybridization reveals the evolving genomic architecture of speciation. Cell Reports. 2013 Nov 14;5(3):666-77.
Yang C, Zhang W, Ren M, Song L, Li T, Zhao J. Whole-genome sequence of Microcystis aeruginosa TAIHU98, a nontoxic bloom-forming strain isolated from Taihu Lake, China. Genome Announcements. 2013 Jun 1(3). pii: e00333-13.
Hu Y, Zhang X, Shi Y, Zhou Y, Zhang W, Su XD, Xia B, Zhao J, Jin C. Structures of Anabaena calcium-binding Protein CcbP: insights into Ca2+ signaling during heterocyst differentiation. J Biol Chem. 2011 Apr 286(14): 12381-12388.
Shi Y*, Zhao W*, Zhang W, Ye Z, Zhao J. Regulation of intracellular free calcium concentration during heterocyst differentiation by HetR and NtcA in Anabaena sp. PCC 7120. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2006 Jul 103(30): 11334-11339.
Laboratory Introduction