Gregory Allan Wray

Gregory Allan Wray

Professor of Evolutionary Anthropology

External address: 
125 Science Drive, 4104 French Family Science Center, Durham, NC 27708
Internal office address: 
Duke Box 90325, Durham, NC 27708-0325
Phone: 
(919) 684-6696

Overview

I study the evolution of genes and genomes with the broad aim of understanding the origins of biological diversity. My approach focuses on changes in the expression of genes using both empirical and computational approaches and spans scales of biological organization from single nucleotides through gene networks to entire genomes. At the finer end of this spectrum of scale, I am focusing on understanding the functional consequences and fitness components of specific genetic variants within regulatory sequences of several genes associated with ecologically relevant traits. At the other end of the scale, I am developing molecular and analytical methods to detect changes in gene function throughout entire genomes, including statistical frameworks for detecting natural selection on regulatory elements and empirical approaches to identify functional variation in transcriptional regulation. At intermediate scales, I am investigating functional variation within a dense gene network in the context of wild populations and natural perturbations. My research leverages the advantages of several different model systems, but primarily focuses on sea urchins and primates (including humans).

Degrees & Credentials

  • Ph.D., Duke University 1987

  • B.S., College of William and Mary 1981

Selected Grants

Embryonic Cell Recognition: Specificity Determinants awarded by National Institutes of Health (Co-Principal Investigator). 1980 to 2023

Evolution of a developmental gene regulatory network during a life history switch in Heliocidaris awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2019 to 2022

Evolution of a developmental gene regulatory network during a life history switch in Heliocidaris awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2019 to 2022

Summer Scholars Program in Genome Sciences and Medicine awarded by National Institutes of Health (Co-Principal Investigator). 2017 to 2022

Postdoctoral Training in Genomic Medicine Research awarded by National Institutes of Health (Mentor). 2017 to 2022

IRES Track 1 IRTG Engaged in Dissecting and Reengineering the Regulatory Genome awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2019 to 2022

Training Program in Developmental and Stem Cell Biology awarded by National Institutes of Health (Mentor). 2001 to 2022

NRT: Integrative Bioinformatics for Investigating and Engineering Microbiomes (IBIEM) awarded by National Science Foundation (Co-Principal Investigator). 2015 to 2020

Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Training Program awarded by National Institutes of Health (Mentor). 2005 to 2020

Genetics Training Grant awarded by National Institutes of Health (Mentor). 1979 to 2020

Pages

Wray, G. A. “Developmental Genes and the Evolution of Morphology.” Palaeobiology II, 2007, pp. 147–52. Scopus, doi:10.1002/9780470999295ch.31. Full Text

Davidson, Phillip L., et al. “A comparative analysis of egg provisioning using mass spectrometry during rapid life history evolution in sea urchins..” Evol Dev, vol. 21, no. 4, July 2019, pp. 188–204. Pubmed, doi:10.1111/ede.12289. Full Text Open Access Copy

Wray, Gregory A., and Eric S. Haag. “Rudolf A. Raff (1941-2019)..” Nature Ecology & Evolution, vol. 3, no. 4, Apr. 2019, pp. 518–19. Epmc, doi:10.1038/s41559-019-0844-z. Full Text

Oulhen, Nathalie, et al. “Identifying gene expression from single cells to single genes..” Methods in Cell Biology, vol. 151, Jan. 2019, pp. 127–58. Epmc, doi:10.1016/bs.mcb.2018.11.018. Full Text

Eisthen, Heather L., et al. “New NSF policy will stifle innovation..” Science (New York, N.Y.), vol. 362, no. 6412, Oct. 2018, pp. 297–98. Epmc, doi:10.1126/science.aav4793. Full Text

Bryois, Julien, et al. “Evaluation of chromatin accessibility in prefrontal cortex of individuals with schizophrenia..” Nat Commun, vol. 9, no. 1, Aug. 2018. Pubmed, doi:10.1038/s41467-018-05379-y. Full Text

Pizzollo, Jason, et al. “Comparative Serum Challenges Show Divergent Patterns of Gene Expression and Open Chromatin in Human and Chimpanzee..” Genome Biol Evol, vol. 10, no. 3, Mar. 2018, pp. 826–39. Pubmed, doi:10.1093/gbe/evy041. Full Text Open Access Copy

Singh, A., et al. “Rudiment resorption as a response to starvation during larval development in the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis.” Canadian Journal of Zoology, vol. 96, no. 10, Jan. 2018, pp. 1178–85. Scopus, doi:10.1139/cjz-2017-0261. Full Text

Byrne, Maria, et al. “Expression of genes and proteins of the pax-six-eya-dach network in the metamorphic sea urchin: Insights into development of the enigmatic echinoderm body plan and sensory structures..” Developmental Dynamics : An Official Publication of the American Association of Anatomists, vol. 247, no. 1, Jan. 2018, pp. 239–49. Epmc, doi:10.1002/dvdy.24584. Full Text

Linchangco, Gregorio V., et al. “The phylogeny of extant starfish (Asteroidea: Echinodermata) including Xyloplax, based on comparative transcriptomics..” Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, vol. 115, Oct. 2017, pp. 161–70. Epmc, doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2017.07.022. Full Text Open Access Copy

Babbitt, Courtney C., et al. “Gene expression and adaptive noncoding changes during human evolution..” Bmc Genomics, vol. 18, no. 1, June 2017. Epmc, doi:10.1186/s12864-017-3831-2. Full Text

Pages

Babbitt, C. C., et al. “Evolution of gene expression network underlying a disease state.” Integrative and Comparative Biology, vol. 55, OXFORD UNIV PRESS INC, 2015, pp. E7–E7.

Bauernfeind, Amy L., et al. “Differences in energy metabolism in the brains of humans and chimpanzees: a study of protein expression.” American Journal of Physical Anthropology, vol. 156, WILEY-BLACKWELL, 2015, pp. 80–80.

Babbitt, Courtney C., and Gregory A. Wray. “Evolution of gene expression network underlying a disease state in humans and non-human primates.” American Journal of Physical Anthropology, vol. 156, WILEY-BLACKWELL, 2015, pp. 74–74.

Bauernfeind, Amy L., et al. “Differential gene and protein expression in the human and chimpanzee brain: A comparison using high-throughput techniques.” American Journal of Physical Anthropology, vol. 153, WILEY-BLACKWELL, 2014, pp. 73–73.

Wygoda, J. A., et al. “Shifts in the Expression of Developmental Regulatory Genes Involved in the Evolution of a Novel Life History Difference.” Integrative and Comparative Biology, vol. 54, OXFORD UNIV PRESS INC, 2014, pp. E230–E230.

Wygoda, J. A., et al. “Developmental Transcriptome of Heliociaris erythrogramma - from bilateral larva to radial juvenile.” Integrative and Comparative Biology, vol. 54, OXFORD UNIV PRESS INC, 2014, pp. E372–E372.

Wray, G. A., et al. “Evolution of an embryonic gene regulatory network in the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus.” Echinoderms in a Changing World, edited by C. Johnson, CRC PRESS-TAYLOR & FRANCIS GROUP, 2013, pp. 276–276.

Runcie, D. E., et al. “Phenotypic plasticity and the developmental regulatory network in the purple sea urchin.” Echinoderms in a Changing World, edited by C. Johnson, CRC PRESS-TAYLOR & FRANCIS GROUP, 2013, pp. 300–01.

Babbitt, C. C., et al. “Conservation and function of noncoding RNAs in primate evolution.” Integrative and Comparative Biology, vol. 52, OXFORD UNIV PRESS INC, 2012, pp. E8–E8.

Horvath, Julie E., et al. “Enamel thickness in Microcebus murinus and Macaca mulana and the evolutionary genetics of enamel matrix proteins in hominoids..” American Journal of Physical Anthropology, vol. 147, WILEY-BLACKWELL, 2012, pp. 168–168.

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