Dr Mara Lawniczak
Wellcome Sanger Institute
Mara Lawniczak is an Evolutionary Geneticist at the Wellcome Sanger Institute. Her lab has two major areas of research: vector population genomics and parasite transmission biology. Efforts are underway in the team to build high quality reference genomes from wild mosquitoes and use these resources to gain a deep understanding of population structure and gene flow for a variety of understudied species, primarily in Africa.
The other major research theme in the group uses single cell RNA sequencing to investigate transmission dynamics in Plasmodium parasites. They have created the ‘Malaria Cell Atlas’, a data resource that will continue to grow as they expand their efforts to examine individual parasite transcriptomes in the context of both lab and natural infections. All areas of their research are aimed at gaining an evolutionary perspective on these organisms with the aim to contribute to malaria control.