Verena Kutschera












Molecular Ecology Ressources



Verena Kutschera

Ph.D. student


Research interests
I am an evolutionary geneticist working on the interface of phylogenetics, phylogeography and population genetics. I am broadly interested in the interaction of genetics, evolution, ecology, and geography, and how they lead to population differentiation and speciation.

Aim of my PhD is to study the evolutionary genetics of bears and red foxes over different time scales (phylogenetics, phylogeography, and population genetics).

Particularly, I am interested in evolutionary relationships among populations and species, the timing of evolutionary events, and in evolutionary processes (e.g., divergence, gene flow, selection) involved in population differentiation, adaptation, and speciation.

2011 – 2014  
Phd-student at the Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre (BiK-F), Frankfurt, Germany
Phd-thesis: “Evolutionary genetics of bears and red foxes over phylogenetic and phylogeographic time scales”, Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Axel Janke

2011  Diploma in biology at the Georg-August-University Goettingen
Diploma thesis: “Characterization of insulin-like signaling in the freshwater snail Lymnaea stagnalis”, Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Daniel J. Jackson

2005 – 2011 Studies of biology at the Georg-August-University Goettingen
Major subjects: Zoology, Biochemistry, Geology/Paleontology

Kalchhauser I.*, Kutschera V.E.*, Burkhardt-Holm P. (2014) The complete mitochondrial genome of the invasive Ponto-Caspian goby Ponticola kessleri obtained from high-throughput sequencing using the Ion Torrent Personal Genome Machine. Mitochondrial DNA:1–3

Kutschera, V. E., Bidon, T., Hailer, F., Rodi, J. L., Fain, S. R., Janke, A. (2014) Bears in a forest of gene trees: Phylogenetic inference is complicated by incomplete lineage sorting and gene flow. Molecular Biology and Evolution, MBE2014/06/05/molbev.msu186

Kutschera, V. E., Lecomte, N., Janke, A., Selva, N., Sokolov, A. A., Haun, T., Steyer, K., Nowak, C., & Hailer, F. (2013). A range-wide synthesis and timeline for phylogeographic events in the red fox (Vulpes vulpes). BMC Evolutionary Biology, 13(1), 114.

Hailer, F., Kutschera, V. E., Hallström, B. M., Fain, S. R., Leonard, J. A., Arnason, U. & Janke, A. (2013). Response to Comment on ‘Nuclear Genomic Sequences Reveal that Polar Bears Are an Old and Distinct Bear Lineage’. Science 339(6127), 1522–1522.

Bidon, T., Frosch, C., Eiken, H. G., Kutschera, V. E., Hagen, S. B., Aarnes, S. G., Fain, S. R., Janke, A. & Hailer, F. (2013). A sensitive and specific multiplex PCR approach for sex identification of ursine and tremarctine bears suitable for non-invasive samples. Molecular Ecology Resources, 13(3), 362–368.

Hailer, F., Kutschera, V. E., Hallström, B. M., Klassert, D., Fain, S. R., Leonard, J. A., Arnason, U. & Janke, A. (2012). Nuclear genomic sequences reveal that polar bears are an old and distinct bear lineage. Science 336(6079), 344-347.

*shared first authors


LOEWE - Biodiversity and Climate Research Center
BiK-F, Project area D
Georg-Voigt-Straße 14-16 (visitors)
Senckenberganlage 25 (mail)
60325 Frankfurt, Germany