Dr Vengamanaidu Modepalli

Anne Warner Research Fellow

Dr Vengamanaidu (Venky) Modepalli smiling next to tanks


I am a comparative and molecular evolutionary biologist, I explore non-bilaterian animals like sponges and cnidarians (corals, sea anemones, and jellyfish) to gain insights into fundamental evolutionary principles. After completing my PhD at Deakin University in Australia, I joined Professor Yehu Moran’s lab at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel to investigate the workings of post-transcriptional gene regulation by small RNAs in cnidarians. In 2018, I received an Anne Warner Research Fellowship to establish my research group at the Marine Biological Association. My research group explores various evolutionary topics, including the emergence of neurons, the evolution of the larval sensory system, and the process of small RNA biogenesis. Our work encompasses molecular and ecological perspectives, as well as directs on immediate global environmental issues while exploring fundamental mechanisms.

Research group: Evolution of early branching metazoans