Department of Ecology & Evolution

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Darli Massardo
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Darli Massardo  

Darli Massardo

Department of Ecology & Evolution
University of Chicago
1101 E. 57th St. Z-206
Chicago, IL 60637



My research focuses mainly on understanding the processes that generate and maintain phenotypic diversity in the polymorphic butterfly Hypolimnas misippus, I approach this question from multiple angles, includinggenetic mapping and association studies. Also, I am developing CRISPR/Cas9 to verify the functional evidence of the genes that controls the variation in wing patterning in butterflies. In addition, I have a collaborative project with Brazilians researchers, where we are using modern analytical techniques from molecular ecology and population genomics to unravel the evolutionary history, ecology, and conservation of two endangered Brazilian Heliconius species, H. hermathena and H. nattereri.


Ph.D. 2009-2013
Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS – Brazil
Department of Zoology - Animal Biology
Harvard University, Cambridge, MA

Visiting Ph.D. student 2011-2012: focusing on evolution and genomics of Dione.
Thesis: Evolution and Natural History of Dione Hübner, [1819]: a morphological and molecular approach

M. Sc. 2007-2009
Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS – Brazil

Department of Zoology - Animal Biology

Bachelor of Science in Biology, 2003-2006
Universidade do Oeste de Santa Catarina – UNOESC, São Miguel do Oeste, SC, Brazil

Current Position  

Current Position
Aug 2014-present
University of Chicago, Chicago IL, Department of Ecology & Evolution

Postdoctoral Fellow: genetics and evolution of mimicry in butterflies
PI: Dr. Marcus Kronforst


Westerman*, E.L, N. VanKuren*, D. Massardo, A. Tenger-Trolander, W. Zhang, R. I. Hill, M. Perry, E. Bayala, K. Barr, N. Chamberlain, T. E. Douglas, N. Buerkle, S. Palmer & M. R. Kronforst. Aristaless controls butterfly wing color variation used in mimicry and mate choice. Current Biology, 2018. *Equal contribution.

Erica L. Westerman, Riva Letchinger, Ayse Tenger-Trolander, Darli Massardo, Daniela Palmer, Marcus R. Kronforst. Does male preference play a role in maintaining female limited polymorphism in a Batesian mimetic butterfly? Behavioural Processes, 2018.

Anyi Mazo-Vargas, Carolina Concha*, Luca Livraghi*, Darli Massardo*, Richard Wallbank*, Linlin Zhang, Joseph Papador, Daniel Martinez-Najera, Chris Jiggins, Marcus Kronforst, Casper Breuker, Robert Reed, Nipam Patel, W. McMillan, Arnaud Martin. Macro-evolutionary shifts of WntA function potentiate butterfly wing pattern diversity. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2017. *Equal contribution author.

Massardo, Darli; Fornel, Rodrigo; Kronforst, Marcus R.; Gonçalves, G.L.; Moreira, Gilson R. P. Diversification of the silverspot butterflies (Nymphalidae) in the Neotropics inferred from multi-locus DNA sequences. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 2014.

Vargas, Héctor A.; Barão, Kim R.; Massardo, Darli; Moreira, Gilson R. P. External morphology of the immature stages of Neotropical heliconians: IX. Dione glycera (C. Felder & R. Felder) (Lepidoptera, Nymphalidae, Heliconiinae). Revista Brasileira de Entomologia, v. 58, p. 129-141, 2014.

Massardo, Darli; Roratto, Paula A.; Vargas, Héctor A.; Kronforst, Marcus R.; Moreira, Gilson R. P. Development of a microsatellite library for the passion flower butterfly Dione moneta Hübner (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae: Heliconiinae). Conservation Genetics Resources, v. 4, p. 1-6, 2012.

Morales, M. N.; Massardo, Darli; Moreira, G. R. P.; Thompson, F. C. A new species of Alipumilio Shannon (Diptera, Syrphidae) found in association with the exudate resin of Schinus terebinthifolius Raddi (Anacardiaceae). Zootaxa, v. 2112, p. 53-64, 2009.

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