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Marjorie is a researcher in evolutionary biology currently working at Harvard University and the Broad Institute. The core theme of her research is the evolution of insect communication where she studies the molecular, functional and genetic basis of prezygotic and postzygotic reproductive isolation, and their ecological consequences. She is passionate by insects, and studies moths and butterflies, and the model fruitfly Drosophila.
She obtained her BSci and MS in Bioengineering from Gembloux Agro-Biotech, University of Liège in Belgium. She then moved to Sweden where she completed her PhD in Ecology in 2010 at the University of Lund in Christer Löfstedt's research group. She then joined Daniel Hartl’s research group at Harvard to conduct research on the fruitfly as a VR and EMBO postdoctoral fellow. Marjorie recently joined Naomi Pierce's lab at Harvard in collaboration with the Broad Institute to study the genetic basis of insect sensory perception. She is a recipient of the 2016 Knut and Alice Wallenberg postdoctoral fellowship at the Broad Institute.
Her PhD dissertation on the Evolution of mate signaling in moths combined biochemical, molecular and functional approaches to understand the biological activities of desaturase and reductase genes in multiple moth and butterfly taxa and retrace their evolutionary history. Marjorie notably developed and optimized in vitro assays using heterologous expression in yeast combined with GC-MS to identify the biological activity of dozens of biosynthetic enzymes, which served as a trigger to develop the pheromone brewery initiative led by Prof. Christer Löfstedt at Lund University, which further explores the potential of yeast and plants as mini-factories to produce environmentally friendly pheromone components to be used for pest monitoring. During her postdoc in the Hartl group, she worked with the fruitfly Drosophila and combined classical genetics, genomics and transgenics tools to identify loci responsible for post-zygotic incompatibilities that manifest in the form of male hybrid sterility between recently diverged fruitfly species, D. mauritiana and D. simulans.