Fordham University            The Jesuit University of New York

faculty gif
Sergios-Orestis Kolokotronis 
 Assistant Professor
Department of Biological Sciences
Fordham University
441 East Fordham Road
Larkin Hall 330-340
Bronx, NY 10458, USA
Phone: 718-817-3672
Fax: 718-817-3645

Education & Training
Diploma, Université de Montpellier II, Biological & Natural Sciences (1998)
BS (Licence & Maîtrise), Université de Paris-Sud XI, Biology of Organisms, Populations, Ecosystems (2000)
MA, 2003 / MPhil, 2005 / PhD, Columbia University, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology (2008)
Postdoctoral Fellow & Research Coordinator, American Museum of Natural History (2008-2011)
Instructor, Richard Gilder Graduate School, American Museum of Natural History (2009-2011)
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Dept. of Ecology, Evolution, & Environmental Biology, Columbia University (2011-2012)
Term Assistant Professor, Dept. of Biology, Barnard College, Columbia University (2011-2012)


Visiting Scholar, New York University, Center for Genomics & Systems Biology (since 2009)
International Collaborator, Universitat de Barcelona, Biodiversity Research Institute (IRBio) (since 2010)

Research Affiliate, American Museum of Natural History, Sackler Inst. for Comparative Genomics (since 2011)
External Resource Faculty Member, Columbia University,
Dept. of Ecology, Evolution, & Environmental Biology (since 2012)
Honorary Researcher, New York Botanical Garden (since 2013)
Research Interests

My interests are widespread across microbes, animals, and plants. I have an interest in the intersection of conservation biology and genetics with an emphasis on endangered species in trade. Lately, I have been focusing on urban biodiversity either in the marketplace (food) or in semi-natural conditions (parks and built environment). I maintain strong ties to the AMNH Sackler Inst. for Comparative Genomics working on conservation genetics of animals (with George Amato) and phylogenomics (with Rob DeSalle). Under the umbrella of the NSF-funded New York Plant Genomics Consortium ( we are studying the evolution of the seed plants using next-generation sequencing technology and bioinformatics approaches across multiple institutions (NYU, AMNH, NYBG, CSHL). In a different project funded by an NIH R01 grant, we are investigating retroviral dynamics in modern and ancient samples of koalas in collaboration with the Univ. of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, the National Museum of Natural History (Smithsonian), California State Univ, Fullerton, the Leibniz Inst. for Zoo & Wildlife Res., Berlin, and the Univ. of Copenhagen Centre for GeoGenetics. With respect to bacteria, we are investigating the tempo and mode of epidemiological evolution of M. tuberculosis and S. aureus using genomic tools in an urban setting with PHRI-UMDNJ and CUMC. New interests include microbial metagenomics in disturbed environments and invasive species. Over the past few years I have been developing new collaborations with colleagues at the Wildlife Conservation Society (Bronx Zoo), the New York Botanical Garden, Columbia Univ. Medical Center, Weill Cornell Medical College, and the Public Health Res. Inst. at UMDNJ.


Graduate and undergraduate positions are available for research internships and theses on a variety of projects. For more information, please contact me at or

Selected Recent Publications
For a complete list of publications and links to media coverage click here.

Mendez M, Jefferson TJ, Kolokotronis SO, Krützen M, Parra GJ, Collins T, Minton G, Baldwin R, Berggren P, Särnblad A, Amir OA, Peddemors VM, Karczmarski L, Guissamulo A, Smith B, Sutaria D, Amato G, Rosenbaum H. (2013) Integrating multiple lines of evidence to better understand the evolutionary divergence of humpback dolphins along their entire distribution range: a new dolphin species in Australian waters? Molecular Ecology

Piagio PJ, Shriner SA, VanDalen KK, Franklin AB, Anderson TD, Kolokotronis SO. (2012) Molecular surveillance of low pathogenic avian influenza viruses in wild birds across the United States: Inferences from the hemagglutinin gene. PLoS ONE 7(12):e50834.

Doukakis P, Pikitch EK, Rothschild A, Desalle R, Amato G, Kolokotronis SO. (2012) Testing the effectiveness of an international conservation agreement: marketplace forensics and CITES caviar trade regulation. PLoS ONE 7(7):e40907.

Smith KS, Anthony SJ, Switzer WM, Epstein JH, Seimon T, Jia H, Sanchez MD, Huynh TT, Galland GG, Shapiro SE, Sleeman JM, McAloose D, Stuchin M, Amato G, Kolokotronis SO, Lipkin WI, Karesh WB, Daszak P, Marano N. (2012) Zoonotic viruses associated with illegally imported wildlife products. PLoS ONE 7(1):e29505.

Lee EK*, Cibrian-Jaramillo A*, Kolokotronis SO*, Katari MS, Stamatakis A, Ott M, Chiu JC, Little DP, Stevenson DW, McCombie WR, Martienssen RA, Coruzzi G, DeSalle R. (2011) A functional phylogenomics view of the seed plants. PLoS Genetics 7(12):e1002411. *equal contribution

Ho SYW, Lanfear R, Phillips MJ, Barnes I, Thomas JA, Kolokotronis SO, Shapiro B. (2011) Bayesian estimation of substitution rates from ancient DNA sequences from low information content. Systematic Biology 60(3):366-375.

Polani S, Roca AL, Rosensteel B, Kolokotronis SO, Bar-Gal GK. (2010) Evolutionary dynamics of endogenous feline leukemia virus proliferation among species of the domestic cat lineage. Virology 405(2):397-407.

Lowenstein JH, Burger J, Jeitner CW, Amato G, Kolokotronis SO, Gochfeld M. (2010) DNA barcodes reveal species-specific mercury levels in tuna sushi that pose a health risk to consumers. Biology Letters 6(5):692-695.

Eaton MJ, Meyers GL, Kolokotronis SO, Leslie MS, Martin AP, Amato G. (2010) Barcoding bushmeat: molecular identification of Central African and South American harvested vertebrates. Conservation Genetics11(14):1389-1404.

Site  | Directories
Submit Search Request