Dr. Margaret Kidwell

Regents Professor (Emerita)
Positions and Education: 
  • Regents Professor, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Arizona 1994-present
  • Head, Dept. of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Arizona 1992-97
  • Chair, Interdisciplinary Program in Genetics, University of Arizona 1988-91
  • Professor, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Arizona 1985-94
  • Professor of Biology, Brown University, 1984-85
  • Associate Professor of Biology (Research), Brown University, 1980-84
  • Assistant Professor (Research), Brown University, 1977-80
  • Investigator, Brown University, 1975-77
  • Research Associate, Brown University, 1974-75
  • Research Fellow, Brown University, 1973-74
  • Ph.D., Brown University, 1973
  • M.S., Iowa State University, 1962
  • B.Sc., Nottingham University, 1953
Honors and Awards: 
  • Elected Member, National Academy of Sciences, 1996
  • Regents Professor of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, 1994
  • Wilhelmina Key Invited Lecturer, American Genetic Association, 1993
  • Elected Fellow, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 1993
  • Elected Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1992
Research Interests: 

Margaret Kidwell studies the population genetics and evolution of transposable elements in Drosophila and other Diptera. Recent and ongoing projects include examination of the frequency and possible mechanisms of horizontal transfer of mobile elements and the reconstruction of phylogenetic trees based on molecular data. She also uses computer simulations to model the dynamics of transposable elements in insect populations and population cage studies to explore the feasibility of using transposable elements as genetic drivers in Drosophila and mosquito populations. Other projects include the population genetics of malaria epidemiology and the mechanisms controlling immune responses to infection in Anopheline mosquitoes.

Selected Publications: 

PubMed list of publications for Margaret Kidwell

  1. Kidwell, M. G. and D. R. Lisch. 2001. Perspective: Transposable elements, parasitic DNA and genome evolution. Evolution 55: 1-24.
  2. Kidwell, M. G. and D. R. Lisch. 2001. Transposable Elements as Sources of Genomic Variation. Chapter In Mobile DNA II. American Society of Microbiology Press. In press.
  3. Lyozin, G. T., Makarova, K. S., Velikodvorskaja, V. V., Zelentsova, H. S., Khechumian, R. R., Kidwell, M. G., Koonin, E. V., and M. B. Evgen'ev. 2001. The structure and evolution of Penelope in the Drosophila virilis species group: an ancient lineage of retroelements. J. Mol. Evol. In press.
  4. Kidwell, M. G. and D. R. Lisch. 2000. Transposable elements and host genome evolution. Trends Ecol. Evol. 15: 95-99.
  5. Kidwell, M. G. and M. B. Evgen'ev. 2000. How valuable are model organisms for transposable element studies? Genetica 107:103-111
  6. Evgen'ev, M. B., Zelentsova, H., Mnjoian, L., Poluectova,H., and M. G. Kidwell 2000. Invasion of Drosophila virilis by the Penelope transposable element. Chromosoma 109:350-357.
  7. Silva, J. C. and M. G. Kidwell. 2000. Selection and horizontal transfer in the evolution of P elements. Mol. Biol. Evol. 17:1542-1557
  8. Evgen'ev, M. B., Zelentsova, H., Poluectova, H., Lyozin, G. T., Veleikodvorskaja, V., Pyatkov, K. I., Zhivotovsky, L. A. and Kidwell, M. G. 2000. Mobile elements and chromosomal evolution in the virilis group of Drosophila. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 97:11337-11342.
  9. Lee, S. H., Clark, J. B., and M. G. Kidwell. 1999. A P-homologous sequence in the house fly, Musca domestica. Insect Molecular Biology 8:491-500.
  10. Zelentsova, H., Poluectova, H., Mnjoian, L., G. Lyozin, V. Veleikodvorskaja, L. Zhivotovski, M. G. Kidwell, and M. B. Evgen'ev. 1999. Distribution and evolution of mobile elements in the virilis species group of Drosophila. Chromosoma 108: 443-456.
  11. Kidwell, M. G. 1997. Hybrid dysgenesis determinants and other useful transposable elements. In Drosophila. Encyclopedia of Genetics. E. C. R. Reeve (ed.). Dearborn Publishers. New York.
Older Publications


  1. Kidwell, M. G., J. F. Kidwell & J. A. Syed 1977. Hybrid dysgenesis in D. melanogaster: a syndrome of aberrant traits including mutation, sterility & male recombination. Genetics 36: 813-33.
  2. Bingham, P. M., M. G. Kidwell & G. M. Rubin 1982. The molecular basis of P-M hybrid dysgenesis: The role of the P element, a P strain-specific transposon family. Cell 29: 995-1004.
  3. Kidwell, M. G. 1983. Evolution of hybrid dysgenesis determinants in Drosophila melanogaster. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. USA 80: 1655-1659.
  4. Anxolabéhère, D., M. G. Kidwell & G. Periquet 1988. Molecular characteristics of diverse populations are consistent with the hypothesis of a recent invasion of Drosophila melanogaster by mobile P elements. Mol. Biol. Evol. 5: 252-269.
  5. Daniels, S. B., K. R. Peterson, L. D. Strausbaugh, M. G. Kidwell & A. Chovnick 1990. Evidence for horizontal transmission of the P transposable element between Drosophila species. Genetics 124: 339-355.
  6. Houck, M. A., J. B. Clark, K. R. Peterson & M. G. Kidwell 1991. Possible horizontal transfer of Drosophila genes by the mite Proctolaelaps regalis. Science 253: 1125-1129.
  7. Kidwell, M. G. 1993. Lateral transfer in natural populations of eukaryotes. Ann. Rev. Genet. 27: 235-256.
  8. Clark, J. B., W. P. Maddison & M. G. Kidwell 1994. Phylogenetic analysis supports horizontal transfer of P transposable elements. Mol. Biol. Evol. 11:40-50.
  9. Kidwell, M. G. and D. Lisch. 1997. Transposable elements as sources of variation in animals and plants. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 94: 7704-7711.
  10. Clark, J. B. and M. G. Kidwell 1997. A phylogenetic perspective on P element evolution in Drosophila. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 94: 11428-11433.

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