Our goal is to discover the molecular mechanisms and computational principles  that underlie the capability of biological systems to acquire, process and utilize information to govern behavior. We do so by studying how fruit flies and bacteria navigate chemical environments, and how collective behavior emerges in bacterial colonies and developmental systems. To probe these systems at the molecular, cellular and behavioral level we combine molecular and biophysical experimental methods with predictive mathematical modeling.

Of particular interest to us is the role of variation in biological sensing and decision making and to understand how biological systems can extract useful work from fluctuations. An exciting hypothesis we are pursuing is that fluctuations when combined with selection and decision making mechanisms facilitates computation and function.

Our lab is interdisciplinary. We have open positions for postdocs, graduate and undergraduate students with training/interests in biology (microbiology, neuroscience, molecular biology), physics, mathematics and engineering.

The Emonet Lab is supported by: The National Institute of General Medical Sciences and The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation and was previously supported by Whitehall Foundation,  James S. McDonnell Foundation, National Science Foundation, National Academies Keck Futures Initiative, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.


High- (red) and low-performance (blue) bacteria migrate together
June 6, 2018
Diversity and collective behavior are both beneficial to groups. However, collective behavior requires coordination whereas diversity tends to reduce it. Our paper on how...
May 23, 2018
Our review on how chance generates diversity and affect behavior and performance in population of isogenic cells is out. After briefly summarizing the architecture and logic...
August 4, 2017
Dip’s paper shows that a transition in the behavior of progenitor cells from ordered to disordered motion helps vertebrates develop straight spines. During normal...