Kevin Kocot

Kevin M. Kocot

Assistant Professor | Curator of Invertebrate Zoology, Alabama Museum of Natural History


  • Ph.D., Molecular Biology, Auburn University, 2013
  • Postdoctoral research: Auburn University
  • Postdoctoral research: University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

Research Interests

  • Invertebrate systematics with emphasis on molluscs (especially aplacophorans)
  • Phylogenomics
  • Evolutionary genomics
  • Biomineralization
  • Orthology inference

Selected Publications

Rodriguez, J., T.P. Jones, P. Sierwald, P.E. Marek, W.A. Shear, M.S. Brewer, M. Kocot, and J.E. Bond. 2018. Step-wise evolution of complex chemical defenses in millipedes: a phylogenomic approach. Scientific Reports 8: 3209.
Kocot, K.M., Tassia, M.G., Halanych, K.M. and Swalla, B.J., 2018. Phylogenomics offers resolution of major tunicate relationships. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 121: 166-173
Kersken, D., M. Kocot, D. Janussen, T. Schell, M. Pfenninger, and P.M. Arbizu. 2018. First insights into the phylogeny of deep-sea glass sponges (Hexactinellida) from polymetallic nodule fields in the Clarion-Clipperton Fracture Zone (CCFZ), northeastern Pacific. Hydrobiologia 108: 101-112..
Whelan, N.V., Kocot, K.M., Moroz, T.P., Mukherjee, K., Williams, P., Paulay, G., Moroz, L.L. and Halanych, K.M., 2017. Ctenophore relationships and their placement as the sister group to all other animals. Nature Ecology & Evolution 1(11): 1737.

Hall, M.R., M. Kocot, K.W. Baughman, S.L. Fernandez-Valverde, M.E.A. Gauthier, W.L. Hatleberg, A. Krishnan, C. McDougall, C.A. Motti, E. Shoguchi, T. Wang, X. Xiang, M. Zhao, U. Bose, C. Shinzato, K. Hisata, M. Fujie, M. Kanda, S.F. Cummins, N. Satoh, S.M. Degnan, and B.M. Degnan. 2017. The crown-of-thorns starfish genome as a guide for biocontrol of this coral reef pest. Nature 544, 231–234

Halanych, K.M. and M. Kocot. 2017. Genome evolution: Shellfish genes. Nature Ecology and Evolution 1:0142.

Voolstra, C.R., GIGA Community of Scientists, G. Wörheide, and J.V. Lopez. 2017. Advancing genomics through the Global Invertebrate Genomics Alliance (GIGA). Invertebrate Systematics 31(1): 1-7.

Kocot K.M., T.H. Struck, J. Merkel, D.S. Waits, C. Todt, P.M. Brannock, D.A. Weese, J.T. Cannon, L.L. Moroz, B. Lieb, and K.M. Halanych. 2017. Phylogenomics of Lophotrochozoa with consideration of systematic error. Systematic Biology

Halanych, K. M., N.V. Whelan, M. Kocot, A.B. Kohn, and L. L. Moroz. 2016. Miscues misplace sponges. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 201525332.

Kocot, K.M. On 20 years of Lophotrochozoa. Organisms Diversity and Evolution 16: 329-343.

Whelan, N.V., K.M. Kocot, L.L. Moroz, and K.M. Halanych. 2015. Error, signal, and the placement of Ctenophora sister to all other animals. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 112(18): 5773-5778.

Kocot, K.M. and C. Todt. 2014. Three new species of meiofaunal solenogasters (Mollusca, Aplacophora) from Friday Harbor, WA, USA. Journal of Natural History 48: 3007-3031.

Cannon, J.T., K.M. Kocot, D.S. Waits, D.A. Weese, B.J. Swalla, S.R. Santos, and K.M. Halanych. 2014. Phylogenomic Resolution of the hemichordate and echinoderm clade. Current Biology 24(23): 2827-2832.

Moroz, L.L., K.M. Kocot, M.R. Citarella, S. Dosung, T.P. Norekian, I.S. Povolotskaya, A.P. Grigorenko, C. Dailey, E. Berezikov, K. Buckley, D. Reshetov, A. Ptitsyn, K. Mukherjee, T.P. Moroz, E. Dabe, F. Yu, V.V. Kapitonov, J. Jurka, Y. Bobkov, J.J. Swore, D.O. Girardo, R. Bruders, C.E. Mills, V.V. Solovyev, J. Rast, B. J. Swalla, F.A. Kondrashov, J.V. Sweedler, E.I. Rogaev, K.M. Halanych, and A.B. Kohn. 2014. The genome of the ctenophore and the emergence of nervous systems. Nature 510: 109-114.

Kocot, K.M., M.R. Citarella, L.L. Moroz, and K.M. Halanych. 2013. PhyloTreePruner: a phylogenetic tree-based approach for selection of orthologous sequences for phylogenomics. Evolutionary Bioinformatics 2013(9): 429-435.

Kocot, K.M., K.M. Halanych, and P.J. Krug. 2013. Phylogenomics supports the Panpulmonata hypothesis: Resolving key steps in the evolutionary radiation of gastropod molluscs. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 69(3): 764-771.

Kocot, K.M., J.T. Cannon, C. Todt, A.B. Kohn, M.R. Citarella, A. Meyer, C. Schander, S.R. Santos, L.L. Moroz, B. Lieb, and K.M. Halanych. 2011. Phylogenomics reveals deep molluscan relationships. Nature 477: 452-456.