Kevin Livingstone, Ph.D.
- Associate Professor , Biology
I grew up in the San Francisco area of Northern California, and then left to go to school in Provo, Utah and Ithaca in western New York state. After finishing my doctorate, I completed my postdoctoral training in Bloomington, Indiana. Along the way I married Amy Allen and we've had three children, Scout, Sage, and Henry. One of the things I love most in life is spending time hiking, rafting, or doing just about anything outdoors with my family.
My research focuses on plant gene evolution, in particular the evolution of genes in the carotenoid biosynthetic pathway. These genes are important because they cause the striking colors seen in many mature fruits, which in turn affect which animals see and consume these fruits, ultimately influencing how their seeds are dispersed. We have looked both at how the interactions among genes in the pathway influences their evolution, as well as the evolution of specific genes known to cause unique colored pigments. This research has found its way into the second semester biology course I teach on why we should eat our vegetables, focusing on why humans are dependent on vitamin A and why it's made in plants.