Sarah Whitney Davies
Associate Professor
Boston University Arts & Sciences

PhD, University of Texas at Austin
MS, University of Calgary
BS, University of Victoria

Changing climates and ongoing anthropogenic habitat modifications threaten natural ecosystems worldwide. In response to these threats, a species has four choices: i) remain in the natal habitat but suffer reduced fitness, ii) acclimate to current conditions by modifying their physiologies, iii) adapt to the local environment through natural selection on standing genetic variation, or iv) disperse to new, more favorable environments. Research in the Davies lab studies the potential roles of acclimation, adaptation, and dispersal in an organism’s response to rapid climate change.

Predicting persistence becomes more challenging when a species’ fitness depends upon interactions between multiple partners. For corals, their fitness is tightly coupled with their symbiotic relationship with algae of the family Symbiodiniaceae, and this symbiosis is strongly influenced by increasing seawater temperatures. Research in the Davies lab integrates eco-evolutionary experiments with genomic and environmental data to determine how corals and their symbionts interact with each other and their environments to determine symbiosis outcomes under rapid climate change.

Equipment: MRI: Track 1 Acquisition of an Illumina NextSeq 2000 Sequencing Instrument
09/01/2023 - 08/31/2026 (Multi-PI)
National Science Foundation

Transcription Factors in Cnidarian Immunity, Symbiosis, and Bleaching
03/01/2020 - 02/28/2025 (Multi-PI)
National Science Foundation

Collaborative Research: How do selection, plasticity, and dispersal interact to determine coral success in warmer and more variable environments?
11/15/2021 - 10/31/2024 (PI)
National Science Foundation

Collaborative Research: Building consensus around the quantification and interpretation of Symbiodiniaceae diversity
08/15/2021 - 07/31/2023 (PI)
National Science Foundation

Outside your shell: How genomic architecture and thermal limits facilitate species invasions in marine mollusks
07/01/2021 - 06/30/2022 (Key Person / Mentor)
Turner Foundation

Reef connectivity and resilience in the Gulf of Mexico
09/01/2018 - 12/31/2020 (PI)
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

RAPID: Collaborative Research: Impact of freshwater runoff from Hurricane Harvey on coral reef benthic of organisms and associated microbial communities
12/01/2017 - 11/30/2019 (PI)
National Science Foundation

Sharing Flower Garden Banks with the World through Telepresence
11/01/2018 - 10/31/2019 (Subcontract PI)
Global Foundation for Ocean Exploration Dept of Comm NOAA

Investigating the influence of thermal history on coral growth response to recent and predicted end-of-century ocean warming across a cascade of ecological scales
11/17/2017 - 02/28/2019 (Subcontract PI)
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill National Science Fdn


Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs

Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Contact for Mentoring:

5 Cummington St
Boston MA 02215
Google Map

Media Mentions
Same Department