Gene E. Robinson
Primary AffiliationIntelligence, Learning, and Plasticity
Status Affiliate Faculty
Home Department of Entomology
Gene Robinson received his Ph.D. from Cornell University in 1986. He is a professor in the University of Illinois Department of Entomolgy and an affiliate member in the Beckman Institute NeuroTech group. He is director of the Neuroscience Program at Illinois and an affiliate of the Department of Cell & Developmental Biology; Department of Animal Biology (UIUC); Department of Political Science; Center for Economic Entomology, Illinois Natural History Survey; and the Biotechnology Center.
Chancellor's Center for Advanced Study Special Lecture Series, Inaugural Speaker, UIUC (2005); Member, National Academy of Sciences (NAS); K.C. Fisher Lecture, Univ. Toronto; Fellow, American Academy of Arts & Sciences.
Dr. Robinson studies mechanisms of behavior in social insects. The honey bee is the primary study organism because its rich social life is uniquely amenable to experimentation, a consequence of the many techniques available to alter precisely genetic, physiological, and environmental parameters.
- Current research is focused on one aspect of colony organization, the division of labor among workers. Efforts in this area involve: identifying behavioral, neural, endocrine, and molecular genetic mechanisms that regulate the activities of individual colony members; and then
- determining the role these mechanisms play in integrating worker behavior into a cohesively functioning colony.
Neuroanatomical studies performed in collaboration with S.E. Fahrbach explore the role of brain plasticity in honey bee behavioral plasticity. We seek to understand complex social behavior from "society to gene."
- Ament, S. A.; Wang, Y.; Chen, C. C.; Blatti, C. A.; Hong, F.; Liang, Z. Z. S.; Negre, N.; White, K. P.; Rodriguez-Zas, S. L.; Mizzen, C. A.; Sinha, S.; Zhong, S.; Robinson, G. E., The Transcription Factor Ultraspiracle Influences Honey Bee Social Behavior and Behavior-Related Gene Expression. PLoS Genetics 2012, 8, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1002596.
- Brockmann, A.; Annangudi, S. P.; Richmond, T. A.; Ament, S. A.; Xie, F.; Southey, B. R.; Rodriguez-Zas, S. R.; Robinson, G. E.; Sweedler, J. V., Quantitative peptidomics reveal brain peptide signatures of behavior. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2009, 106, (7), 2383-2388.
- Robinson, G. E.; Fernald, R. D.; Clayton, D. F., Genes and Social Behavior. Science 2008, 322, (5903), 896-900.
- Ismail, N.; Robinson, G.E.; Fahrbach, S.E., Stimulation of muscarinic receptors mimics experience-dependent plasticity in the honey bee brain. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, (in press).
- Robinson, G.E.; Grozinger, C.M.; Whitfield, C.W., Sociogenomics: Social life in molecular terms. Nature Reviews Genetics 2005, 6, 257-70.
- Grozinger, C.M.; Sharabash, N.; Whitfield, C.W.; Robinson, G.E., Pheromone-mediated gene expression in the honey bee brain. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Suppl. 2 2003, 14519-25.
- Whitfield, C.W.; Cziko, A.-M.; Robinson, G.E., Gene expression patterns in the brain predict behavior in individual honey bees. Science 2003, 302, 296-299.
- Ben-Shahar, Y.; Robichon, A.; Sokolowski, M.B.; Robinson, G.E., Influence of gene action across different time scales on behavior. Science 2002, 296, 741-744.
- Ambitious project to sequence genomes of 1.5 million species kicks off
- Honey bee researcher Gene Robinson elected to National Academy of Medicine
- How insulin helped create ant societies
- Robinson, Robbennolt to teach new online course
- What turns bees into killer bees?
- Earth Biogenome Project aims to sequence genomes of 1.5 million species
- Gene Robinson awarded Israeli Wolf Prize in Agriculture
- Genomic study explores evolution of gentle ‘killer bees’ in Puerto Rico
- Robinson and colleagues explore evolution of gentle 'killer bees'
- Study finds parallels between unresponsive honey bees, autism in humans
- Ag department addresses honeybee decline
- Beckman researchers among inaugural faculty for Carle Illinois College of Medicine
- Why are some mice (and people) monogamous? A study points to genes