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Guanyang Zhang

Postdoctoral Researcher

Ph.D. 2012, Entomology – University of California at Riverside (Personal research website)

Curriculum Vitae

2015-12-12 16_21_05-Discover, document & understand insect diversity - Exploring insect systematics

GYZ-smallSynopsis. I am a postdoctoral researcher in the Franz Lab at ASU, and broadly interested in systematics, biodiversity and entomology.

I am pursuing several lines of research centered around the systematics and evolution of weevils, as outline below. (1) Molecular phylogeny and historical biogeography of the Neotropical Exophthalmus genus complex. (2) Reclassification of the Exophthalmus genus complex based on morphological and molecular phylogenies. (3) Molecular phylogeny and diversification of Eustylini and Geonemini (4) Diversity and evolution of bacterial symbionts based on 16s sequenced using Illumiana across the Curculionoidea. (5) Molecular profiling and phylogenetic patterns of weevil-host plant associations. (6) Phylogenomics of weevils using hybrid enrichment to capture 500 loci or 1 m bp. I am also collaborating on projects that involve ontology, concept taxonomy and mimicry in reduviids and braconids.

My past research concerned the taxonomy, systematics, natural history and evolution of Reduviidae or assassin bugs. My Ph.D. project, carried out in the Weirauch Lab at UC Riverside, consisted of a taxonomic revision of a large genus (>70 species) of assassin bugs, a molecular phylogeny of the tribe Harpactorini sampling 80 genera or 229 species and 5 gene segments, and a comparative morphological study of sticky glands.

Email: gzhang44(at)


10. Thessen, A.E., Bunker, D.E., Buttigieg, P.L., Cooper, L.D., Dahdul, W.M., Domisch, S., Franz, N.M., Jaiswal, P., Lawrence-Dill, C.J., Midford, P.E., Mungall, C.J., Ramírez, M.J., Specht, C.D., Vogt, L., Vos, R.A., Walls, R.L., White, J.W., Zhang, G., Deans, A.R., Huala, E., Lewis, S.E., and Mabee, P.M. Semantic linking of phenotypes and environments: A review. PeerJ. Accepted.

9. • Zhang, J., Weirauch, C., Zhang, G. & Forero, D. Molecular phylogeny of Harpactorinae and Bactrodinae uncovers complex evolution of sticky trap predation in assassin bugs (Heteroptera: Reduviidae). Cladistics, Online. DOI: 10.1111/cla.12140. PDF

8. Zhang, G. & Weirauch, C. 2013. Molecular phylogeny of Harpactorini (Insecta: Reduviidae): correlation of novel predation strategy with accelerated evolution of predatory leg morphology. Cladistics Online Early View DOI: 10.1111/cla.12049

7. Zhang, G. & Weirauch, C. 2013. Sticky predators: a comparative study of sticky glands in harpactorine assassin bugs (Insecta: Hemiptera: Reduviidae). Acta Zoologica 94(1): 1–10.

6. Weirauch, C., Alvarez, C & Zhang, G. 2012. Investigating dispersalist potential: observations on the natural enemy assassin bugs Zelus renardii and Zelus tetracanthus. Florida Entomologist 95(3): 641–649.

5. Zhang, G. & Weirauch, C. 2011. Matching dimorphic sexes and immature stages with adults: resolving the systematics of the Bekilya group of Malagasy assassin bugs (Hemiptera: Reduviidae: Peiratinae). Systematic Entomology 36(1): 115–138.

4. • Hwang, W. S., Zhang, G., Maslov, D. and Weirauch, C. 2010. Infection rates of Trypanosoma cruzi in Triatominae (Hemiptera: Reduviidae) in Southern California. American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 83(5): 1020–1022. PDF

3. Zhang, G. 2009. Specimens versus sequences. Science 323(5922): 1672. (Letter to the Editor)

2. Meier, R. & Zhang, G. 2009. DNA barcoding and DNA taxonomy: an assessment based on 4261 COI sequences for 1001 species. In: Diptera Diversity: Status, Challenges and Tools; edited by T. Pape, D. Bickel & R. Meier. Brill Academic Publishers. (Book Chapter)

1. Meier, R., Zhang, G. & Ali, F. 2008. The use of mean instead of smallest interspecific distances exaggerates the size of the “barcoding gap” and leads to misidentification. Systematic Biology 57(5): 809–813.


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