Research

I am interested in the evolution of biological complexity, using microbes and theoretical models as study systems. In particular, I'm studying multicellular evolution, within the framework of the major evolutionary transitions, using snowflake yeast as an empirical model along with theoretical models of cooperation and multicellular development. Below you can find links and copies of my papers. You can also check my Google Scholar profile.

A diagram showing the transition to multicellular life.

Publications & associated content

Why have aggregative multicellular organisms stayed simple? Pedro Márquez-Zacarías, Peter L Conlin, Kai Tong, Jennifer T Pentz, and William C Ratcliff. Current Genetics (2021). Journal link. Download PDF.

Evolution of Cellular Differentiation: From Hypotheses to Models. Pedro Márquez-Zacarías, Rozenn M Pineau, Marcella Gomez, Alan Veliz-Cuba, David Murrugarra, William C Ratcliff, and Karl J Niklas. Trends in Ecology and Evolution (2020). Journal link. Download PDF.

Ecological Advantages and Evolutionary Limitations of Aggregative Multicellular Development. Jennifer T Pentz, Pedro Márquez-Zacarías, G Ozan Bozdag, Anthony Burnetti, Peter J Yunker, Eric Libby, and William C Ratcliff. Current Biology (2020). Journal link. Download PDF.
        Commentary:
        Evolution of Multicellularity: One from Many or Many from One? Elizabeth A. Ostrowski. Current Biology (2020). Journal link. Download PDF.

Topological constraints in early multicellularity favor reproductive division of labor. David Yanni, Shane Jacobeen, Pedro Márquez-Zacarías, Joshua S Weitz, William C Ratcliff, and Peter J Yunker. eLife (2020). Journal link. Download PDF.
        Commentary:
        Evolution: How geometry shapes division of labor. Merlijn Staps and Corina Tarnita. eLife (2020). Journal link. Download PDF.
        Relevant related research:
        Does the evolution of division of labour require accelerating returns from individual specialisation?
        Guy Cooper, Hadleigh Frost, Ming Liu, and Stuart West. bioRxiv (2021). Journal link. Download PDF.

Drivers of Spatial Structure in Social Microbial Communities. David Yanni, Pedro Márquez-Zacarías, Peter J Yunker, and William C Ratcliff. Current Biology (2019). Journal link. Download PDF.

Variability of rRNA Operon Copy Number and Growth Rate Dynamics of Bacillus Isolated from an Extremely Oligotrophic Aquatic Ecosystem. Jorge A Valdivia-Anistro, Luis E Eguiarte-Fruns, Gabriela Delgado-Sapién, Pedro Márquez-Zacarías, Jaime Gasca-Pineda, Jennifer Learned, James J Elser, Gabriela Olmedo-Alvarez, and Valeria Souza. Frontiers in Microbiology (2016). Journal link. Download PDF.