Susanne Pfeifer

Susanne Pfeifer

Associate Faculty, Biodesign Center for Mechanisms of Evolution
Assistant Professor, School of Life Sciences


Susanne Pfeifer is an Assistant Professor in the ASU School of Life Sciences, the Center for Evolution & Medicine, and the Center for Mechanisms of Evolution.

The Pfeifer lab is interested in studying genetic and evolutionary processes by combining large-scale, high-throughput sequence data analysis, model-based statistical inference, and modeling with two main foci: (i) to elucidate the causes and consequences of mutation and recombination rate variation (with a focus on primates) and (ii) to understand how natural selection shapes patterns of genetic variation in populations (with particular interest in understanding the process of adaptation during rapid environmental change).

Susanne Pfeifer earned a B.Sc. and M.Sc. from the Max Plank Institute for Computer Science & Saarland University (Germany). She earned her D.Phil. in Statistics at the University of Oxford (UK) advised by Gil McVean, working on the statistical challenges involved in the estimation of variation in mutation and recombination rates from high throughput sequencing data, with direct applications to primate population genetics in a collaboration with Molly Przeworski’s Lab at the University of Chicago and Peter Donnelly’s Lab at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics in Oxford. She completed her postdoctoral work as a Vienna International Postdoctoral Program fellow at the Center for Integrative Bioinformatics in Vienna (Austria) and worked as a research associate at EPFL (Switzerland).