Recombination shapes genetic effects on fitness. Modified from Livnat et al., "Sex, mixability and modularity," Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 107:1452-7.


We study mutational and recombinational mechanisms and how they affect the process of evolution at the fundamental level. We employ a wide range of techniques, from mathematical models to cutting-edge experimental methods. By revisiting the fundamentals of evolution, our research has potential implications in diverse fields, from evolutionary biology to molecular medicine and computation. 

Research Questions and Directions

  • Do the probabilities of mutation depend on the genotype in a complex manner?  

  • Is there a relation between the nature of mutation and the role of sexual reproduction in evolution?   

  • We also work on expanding the bridge between evolution-ary biology and theoretical computer science, examining the evolutionary process through the computational lens.   

Lab Activities

Sep. 24th 2020.  (Subject to COVID-19 changes) Dr. Livnat will be giving a Keynote Lecture at a workshop at the University of Bonn on the Mathematical and Game Theoretic Foundations of Evolution to an interdisciplinary audience of mathematicians, computer scientists, evolutionary biologists, and medical investigators.

Jan. 1st 2020.  Dr. Livnat co-organized a workshop at the interface of evolutionary biology and computer science at Tel Aviv University with participation of world-leaders in theoretical computer science Christos Papadimitriou from Columbia University and Leslie Valiant from Harvard University, Israeli biologists from the Weizmann Institute and TAU, and more. 

Dec. 11th 2019. Ph.D. student Liudmyla Vasylneko presented a poster titled "Sex: the Power of Randomization" at the meeting of the Israeli Society for Evolutionary Biology at Tel Aviv University. 

Sep. 7th 2019. Dr. Livnat gave an invited talk at Columbia University on the role of sexual recombination in evolution.