Jennifer Lachowiec Assistant Professor - Ph.D. from the University of Washington,  2014.

Office: 408 Leon Johnson Hall
Lab: 415 Leon Johnson Hall

Phone: 406-994-2903 (office), 406-994-4091 (lab)
Email Dr. Lachowiec





Research in the Lachowiec lab revolves around a key challenge in genetics: the goal of predicting traits from genetic sequences. Achieving this goal requires greater understanding of how organisms tolerate genetic and environmental perturbations. Projects in the lab study the molecular mechanisms governing genetic and environmental robustness, the ability of organisms to maintain phenotypes despite genetic interactions and environmental change. We study the what, how and why of robustness. WHAT molecular mechanisms provide robustness? Quantitative genetics and candidate gene approaches are used to identify genes underlying robustness. HOW is robustness provided? Molecular biology and genomics are used to examine the propagation of perturbations during plant development. WHY are robustness mechanisms there? Evolutionary theory and gene regulatory networks are used to understand how robustness mechanisms evolve. 


Research: quantitative genetics and statistical genomics; teaching BIOB 318 (Biometry) and PS 516 (Research Design and Analysis)


  • B.S. Major Genetics, Anthropology, University of Wisconsin, 2008
  • Ph.D. Molecular and Cellular Biology, University of Washington, 2014
  • Post-doctoral Research Fellowship, University of Michigan, 2014-2017


  • Genetics Society of America
  • Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution
  • American Society of Plant Biologists


  • BIOB 318 Biometry 3 cr Fall semester
  • PS 516 Research design & analysis 3 cr Fall semester


Lachowiec J, Queitsch C, Kliebenstein D. Molecular mechanisms modulating differential plant developmental robustness. Annals of Botany. 2016. 117 (5), 795-809.

Lachowiec, J, Shen X, Queitsch C, Carlborg O. A Genome-Wide Association Analysis Reveals Epistatic Cancellation of Additive Genetic Variance for Root Length in Arabidopsis thaliana. PLoS Genetics. 2015. 11 (9), e1005541

Lachowiec J, Lemus T, Borenstein E, Queitsch C. Hsp90s promotes kinase evolution. Molecular Biology and Evolution. 2015. 32 (1): 91-99.

Lachowiec J, Lemus T, Thomas JH, Murphy P, Nemhauser JL, Queitsch C. HSP90 can facilitate the divergence of gene duplicates. Genetics. 2013. 193:1269-1277.

Lempe J, Lachowiec J, Sullivan AM, Queitsch C. Molecular mechanisms of robustness in plants. Current Opinion in Plant Biology. 2013. 1:62-69.

Pavelec DM, Lachowiec J, Duchaine TF, Smith HE, Kennedy S. Requirement for ERI/DICER complex in endogenous RNAi and sperm development in C. elegans. Genetics. 2009. 183:1283–1295.

Guang S, Bochner AF, Pavelec DM, Burkhart KB, Harding S, Lachowiec J, Kennedy S. An Argonaute transports siRNAs from the cytoplasm to the nucleus. Science. 2008. Jul 25;321(5888):537-41.