Matt MacManes

Matthew MacManes

Genome Enabled Biology
Phone: (603) 862-4052
Office: Molecular, Cellular & Biomedical Sciences, Gregg Hall Room 434, Durham, NH 03824
Pronouns: He/him/his

The MacManes lab tl;dr. We use physiology and genomics to study the coolest mammal on the planet! Who so cool? It lives it's entire life without ever needing to drink water, and may never urinate!

We are interested in understanding how adaptive evolution has shaped animal (mostly in mammals) diversity. We are particularly interested in physiology and genomics, and use real-time metabolic phenotyping and high-throughput sequencing technologies to better understand this. We have several ongoing projects all related to how animals survive in exceptionally harsh environments, like deserts. Our experimental setup allows us to house animals in the lab in desert conditions (hot and dry), but to manipulate everything else (for instance diet, water availability) and measure things like blood electrolytes, metabolic rate, and rate of water loss. We can link those measurements to gene expression and other genomic processes! Sound cool? You should join us!!

Courses Taught

  • BMS 508: Human Anatomy & Physiology II
  • GEN 604: Honors/Principles of Genetics
  • GEN 705: Population Genetics
  • GEN 705/805: Population Genetics
  • GEN 711/811: Genomics and Bioinformatics
  • GEN 725/825: Population Genetics Lab
  • GEN 799H: Honors Senior Thesis
  • GEN 805: Population Genetics
  • MCBS 999: Doctoral Research


  • Ph.D., Integrative Biology, University of California - Berkeley
  • B.S., Natural Resources, University of Michigan
  • A.A.S., Nursing, Broome Comm College

Research Interests

  • Animal Behavior/Ethology
  • Bioinformatics
  • Evolutionary Biology
  • Functional Genomics
  • Genomics
  • Mammalogy
  • Transcriptomics
  • Vertebrate Physiology

Selected Publications

  • Blumstein, D. M., & MacManes, M. D. (2023). When the tap runs dry: the physiological effects of acute experimental dehydration in Peromyscus eremicus.. J Exp Biol, 226(23). doi:10.1242/jeb.246386

  • Colella, J. P., Blumstein, D. M., & MacManes, M. D. (2022). Disentangling environmental drivers of circadian metabolism in desert-adapted mice (vol 224, jeb242529, 2021). JOURNAL OF EXPERIMENTAL BIOLOGY, 225(15). doi:10.1242/jeb.244281

  • Tigano, A., Khan, R., Omer, A. D., Weisz, D., Dudchenko, O., Multani, A. S., . . . MacManes, M. D. (2022). Chromosome size affects sequence divergence between species through the interplay of recombination and selection. EVOLUTION, 76(4), 782-798. doi:10.1111/evo.14467

  • Blumstein, D., Colella, J., Linder, E., & MacManes, M. (2022). High total water loss driven by low-fat diet in desert-adapted mice. doi:10.1101/2022.04.15.488461

  • Colella, J. P., Blumstein, D. M., & MacManes, M. D. (2021). Disentangling environmental drivers of circadian metabolism in desert-adapted mice. JOURNAL OF EXPERIMENTAL BIOLOGY, 224(18). doi:10.1242/jeb.242529

  • Rogers, R. L., Zhou, L., Chu, C., Marquez, R., Corl, A., Linderoth, T., . . . Nielsen, R. (2018). Genomic Takeover by Transposable Elements in the Strawberry Poison Frog. MOLECULAR BIOLOGY AND EVOLUTION, 35(12), 2913-2927. doi:10.1093/molbev/msy185

  • MaManes, M. D. (2018). The Oyster River Protocol: a multi-assembler and kmer approach for de novo transcriptome assembly. PEERJ, 6. doi:10.7717/peerj.5428

  • Calisi, R. M., Austin, S. H., Lang, A. S., & MacManes, M. D. (2018). Sex-biased transcriptomic response of the reproductive axis to stress. HORMONES AND BEHAVIOR, 100, 56-68. doi:10.1016/j.yhbeh.2017.11.011

  • MacManes, M. D. (2017). Severe acute dehydration in a desert rodent elicits a transcriptional response that effectively prevents kidney injury. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSIOLOGY-RENAL PHYSIOLOGY, 313(2), F262-F272. doi:10.1152/ajprenal.00067.2017

  • Calisi, R., Austin, S., Lang, A., & MacManes, M. (2017). Sex-biased transcriptomic response of the reproductive axis to stress. doi:10.1101/152801