Research Interests (300 words)
Currently, in my doctoral thesis i am working on studying plant evolution in a group of parasitic plants, Cuscuta (dodders). This is a very diverse group in terms of its photosynthetic abilities and morphology and forms a very interesting study system. It has 4 subgroups out of which one has not been characterized yet, each with their unique features and level of parasitism. The uncharacterized subgenus Monogynella has the combined diversity of the other three subgenera, making it a very cool system to study. The aim of my thesis is to characterize this subgenus based on molecular, morphological, and genomic data and establish a phylogenetic tree of evolution for the same.
Previously I have worked in ecology studying plant sexual systems
specifically andromonoecy in the genus Murdannia based on resource allocation and pollinator preferences.