Aims and scope of journal
Impact factor
Abstracted/indexed in


Aims and scope of journal

Heredity is the official journal of the Genetics Society. It covers a broad range of topics within the field of genetics and therefore papers must address conceptual or applied issues of interest to the journal's wide readership. The focus should thus be on broad general lessons that can be extended across systems.
The journal particularly encourages submissions in the following areas:

  • population genetics/ genomics
  • functional genomics, transcriptomics, metabolomics and proteomics
  • epigenetics
  • ecological genetics
  • evolutionary genetics
  • quantitative genetics
  • adaptation genomics
  • crop and livestock genetics/ genomics

Heredity's original articles cover new theory and primary empirical research that offers novel insights, using the latest advances in technological and analytical tools. The journal also publishes regular reviews and special issues on current topics.


Impact factor

2016 Impact Factor 3.961*

34/153 Ecology
15/48 Evolutionary Biology
44/166 Genetics & Heredity

*2016 Journal Citation Reports® Science Edition (Clarivate Analytics, 2017)


Abstracted/indexed in

Biological Abstracts
BIOBASE/Current Awareness in Biological Sciences
BIOSIS Previews
Cambridge Scientific Abstracts
Chemical Abstracts
Current Contents/Agriculture, Biology & Environmental Sciences
Current Contents/Life Sciences
EMBASE/Excerpta Medica
Genetics Abstracts
MEDLINE/Index Medicus
Research Alert
Science Citation Index
SciSearch and Social Sciences Citation Index
Zoological Research



The international standard serial number (ISSN) for Heredity is 0018-067X, and the electronic international standard serial number (eISSN) is 1365-2540.




Barbara K. Mable, University of Glasgow, UK


Barbara Mable is a Professor of Evolutionary Genetics, with a specific interest in understanding the effects of gene and whole genome duplication on processes involved in adaptation to changing biotic and abiotic environments. She did her PhD at the University of Texas at Austin on the evolution of polyploidy in frogs; during this time she co-edited the 2nd Edition of Molecular Systematics with David Hillis and Craig Moritz. She did her first postdoc at the University of British Columbia, where she worked with Sally Otto, studying ploidy evolution in yeast. She then went to the University of Edinburgh, where she worked with Deborah Charlesworth on the evolutionary dynamics of self-incompatibility genes in plants. After a four year Assistant Professorship at the University of Guelph in Canada, she moved to the University of Glasgow in 2004, initially on a NERC Advanced fellowship. Her current research interests continue to span organisms and research areas, with recent projects focused on: using genes under balancing selection (such as self-incompatibility genes, resistance genes and immune genes) to study adaptive processes in plants and animals; conservation genetics of Scottish frogs and lampreys; genetics of associations between vectors, pathogens and hosts; and evolution of resistance in nematodes.


Rowan Barrett, McGill University, Canada


Rowan Barrett is an Assistant Professor and Canada Research Chair in the Redpath Museum and Biology Department at McGill University, Montreal, Canada. He completed his Ph.D. at the University of British Columbia in 2010 and received postdoctoral training at Harvard University before taking up his current position. Dr. Barrett's work is focused on understanding the genetic basis of adaptation to changing environments. His research bridges theoretical and empirical approaches in population genetics, evolutionary ecology, and molecular biology to ask questions about the reciprocal interactions between ecological and evolutionary processes. He has pursued this research program with a variety of key study systems, including stickleback fish, deer mice, anolis lizards, and microbes.

Giorgio Bertorelle, University of Ferrara, Italy

Giorgio Bertorelle

Giorgio Bertorelle is a population geneticist at the University of Ferrara, Italy. He obtained a PhD at the University of Padova in 1996. His main interest is the reconstruction of evolutionary processes using genetic variation data in different species, including the statistical aspects and the understanding of the impact on genomes of environmental changes related to human activities.

John Bradshaw, James Hutton Institute, Dundee, UK

John Bradshaw

John Bradshaw spent the whole of his 34 year career (1975-2009) as a plant breeder and geneticist at what is now the James Hutton Institute in Dundee; having studied genetics and applied genetics at the Universities of Cambridge (BA), Birmingham (MSc) and East Anglia (PhD). He worked on barley, brassicas (kale, swedes and turnips) and potatoes; doing research on the applications of genetics to plant breeding methods as well as breeding finished cultivars. He was particularly interested in methods of kale population improvement, the genetic basis of heterosis in swedes, the theory and practice of linkage and QTL analysis in tetraploid potatoes, and breeding for quantitative resistance to pests and diseases (clubroot in kale, powdery mildew in swedes, and late blight and cyst nematodes in potatoes). He has written extensively on plant breeding and genetics and is widely travelled (the photograph is visiting potato trials in China). In May 2012 he was made an honorary member of EUCARPIA, the European Association for Research on Plant Breeding.

Armando Caballero Rua, University of Vigo, Spain

Armando Caballero Rua

Armando Caballero is a population and quantitative geneticist interested in conservation genetics and evolution. He obtained a PhD at Universidad Complutense de Madrid in 1990 and worked as a postdoctoral research fellow at Edinburgh University from 1990 to 1996. He is currently Professor of Genetics at Universidad de Vigo. His work has focused on effective population size theory, genetic diversity and inbreeding, nature of quantitative genetic variation and genetic management of conserved populations.

Lounès Chikhi, University of Toulouse, France


Lounès Chikhi is a population geneticist working at the CNRS (French National Centre for Scientific Research) in Toulouse, France. He is also the Principal Investigator of the Population and Conservation Genetics group, at the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, in Oeiras, Portugal. He defended his PhD in 1995 in Paris VII (Universitè Pierre et Marie Curie) for a work carried out between Montpellier, Abidjan and Sète. After a post-doc in Padua, Italy and several post-docs in the UK (Institute of Zoology, in London, Queen Mary and Westfield College, University College London, and University of Cardiff) he joined the EDB (Evolution & Diversité Biologique) lab in Toulouse, France in 2002. He is interested in understanding how genetic data can be used to reconstruct the recent history of populations.

Sara Goodacre, Nottingham University, UK

Sara Goodacre

Sara Goodacre is an evolutionary biologist who established the 'SpiderLab' at Nottingham University in 2007. Sara and her group work on a range of evolutionary and conservation genetic studies, using spiders as model systems. Examples of current projects include studies of dispersal-strategy and the persistence of population differentiation in spider meta-populations, and the genetic consequences of cooperative behaviour in desert spiders. Recently the lab has also started to work on molecular genetic studies of native and synthetic spider silk, focussing on a range of tarantula species.

Bengt Hansson, Lund University, Sweden

Bengt Hansson

Bengt Hansson is an evolutionary biologist with particular interests in sex chromosomes and speciation. He applies population genetics, quantitative genetics and population genomics approaches. He received his PhD at Lund University (2003), did a postdoc at the University of Edinburgh (2003-2005), and is currently a senior lecturer at Lund University.

Olivier Hardy, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium

Olivier Hardy

Olivier Hardy has specific interest in plant population genetics, phylogeography and community ecology. He did his PhD on the evolution of a polyploid complex at the Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium, and a postdoc on gene dispersal in an endangered plant at the University of Montpellier II, France. He also developed computer programs simulating processes or treating population genetics or community data. His current research focus on African rain forest plants, including species delimitation, comparative phylogeography, seed and pollen dispersal, and community phylogenetics.

Gerald Heckel, University of Bern, Switzerland

Gerald Heckel

Gerald Heckel is an evolutionary biologist with relatively diverse research interests in speciation, invasion processes, behavior genetics and host-pathogen co-evolution. He received his PhD from the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg in Germany for behavioral and genetic research on the mating system of neotropical bats. After moving to Switzerland and a short postdoc, he started his own research projects at the University of Bern on the population genetics and molecular ecology of several vertebrate and invertebrate systems - at present mostly wild rodents and their more or less faithful parasites. Research approaches draw on ecological and behavioral work together with genetic, genomic and transcriptomic analyses to understand the establishment and maintenance of evolutionary divergence and functional biodiversity.

Johan Hollander, Lund University, Sweden


Johan Hollander is an evolutionary biologist as well as a marine biologist at Lund University, Sweden. His research addresses evolutionary questions such as the origin of species, phenotypic plasticity and dispersal strategies. He primarily uses marine molluscs as model organisms. In the field of speciation, his research focuses on the genetic mechanisms to link selection to reproductive isolation, and evolution of genital divergence – how genital form is linked with reproductive character displacement and reinforcement.

Jane Hughes, Griffith University, Australia

Jane Hughes

Jane Hughes runs the Molecular Ecology laboratory at Griffith University. Her interests are in using molecular markers to answer ecological and evolutionary questions. She heads the aquatic conservation and biodiversity theme within the Australian Rivers Institute.

Pär K. Ingvarsson, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden


Pär Ingvarsson is professor of Plant Genomics and Plant Breeding and his main interests are understanding the genetic basis of adaptive traits, mainly in woody perennial plants such as aspens and spruces. He did his PhD at Umeå University and spent time as a postdoctoral researcher at University of British Columbia and University of Virginia before returning to a faculty position at Umeå University. He recently moved to Uppsala and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. His current research is focused on combining population, quantitative and comparative genomics to understand the evolution of adaptive traits.

Frank Jiggins, University of Cambridge, UK

Frank Jiggins

Frank Jiggins works on the evolution and genetics of hosts and parasites, mostly using insects as a model system. He did his PhD in Genetics at the University of Cambridge, working on bacterial symbionts in butterflies. After a fellowship in Cambridge he moved to Edinburgh, where his lab began working on Drosophila. Six years later he moved back to Cambridge, where he holds a readership in Evolutionary Genetics and a Royal Society University Research Fellowship. His current research interests include understanding how selection by pathogens has shaped animal genomes and why animals vary in susceptibility to infection. To answer these questions in Drosophila, mosquitoes and rabbits he uses the tools of genomics and evolutionary genetics.

Sara Knott, University of Edinburgh, UK

Sara Knott

Sara Knott is a quantitative geneticist. She obtained her PhD from The University of Edinburgh, based at the AFRC Institute of Animal Physiology and Genetics Research. Since then she has stayed at the University of Edinburgh and is now in the Institute of Evolutionary Biology. Her interests are in the development and application of statistical approaches to understand the genetic architecture of complex traits.

Lori J Lawson Handley, University of Hull, UK

Lori Lawson Handley

Lori Lawson Handley is an evolutionary biologist. Her research interests span quite a diverse range of topics within the general realm of ecological and evolutionary genetics, but basically she uses population genetics approaches to understand the fundamental evolutionary and demographic processes that determine the genetic make-up of populations. Since moving to Hull in September 2007, Lori's research has focused on the ecology and evolutionary biology of invasive alien species, and in particular, the harlequin ladybird. Her research group are trying to elucidate the source populations and invasion routes of this highly invasive species, and to understand why it is such a successful invader. She is part of the UK ladybird research group and ladybird survey, and part of a global consortium of researchers working on different aspects of the biology of invasive arthropods.

Thomas R Meagher, University of St. Andrews, UK

Thomas Meagher

Thomas Meagher is a plant evolutionary biologist with interests in population structure, phenotypic evolution, pedigree inference, conservation biology, and applied evolution. He did his PhD at Duke University on population demography of dioecious plants, and supplemented that work with adaptation of forensic methods of paternity analysis to investigate mating system dynamics in natural populations. His research career has included work at Duke University, Cambridge University (Fulbright Fellow), Rutgers University, and since 1999 he has held a personal chair at the University of St Andrews. His current interests include investigation of local and regional population structure with a particular emphasis on conservation and biodiversity management and integration of scientific results into government policy.

Kermit Ritland, University of British Columbia, Canada

Kermit Ritland

Kermit Ritland is a population geneticist who has traditionally worked with plant mating systems but more recently with genomics of poplar and spruce. He did his PhD at the University of California, Davis, on the evolution of plant life histories. He moved on to estimation of mating systems, and authored the well-used program "mltr", and used yellow monkeyflowers (Mimulus guttutus and relatives as a model system for studying the evolution of inbreeding. After 11 years as a professor at U. Toronto, where that work was done, he moved to UBC in Vancouver BC in 1996, and found himself involved with several facets of forest genetics and molecular ecology, and since 2001 forest genomics (involving large scale grants funded by Genome Canada/Genome BC).

Aurora Ruiz-Herrera, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain

Aurora Ruiz-Herrera

Aurora Ruiz-Herrera is an evolutionary biologist. Her research activity has been focused on three main areas: (i) comparative genomics, (ii) reproductive biology and (iii) genomic instability, faces of a three-sided pyramid that has as a main objective to understand the mechanisms driving genome organization and evolution. She did her PhD at the Autonomous University of Barcelona on chromosome evolution and then spent five years of postdoctoral training at the University of Stellenbosch (South Africa) and the University of Pavia (Italy). Since 2009 she moved back to Barcelona, where she heads the Animal Genomics Group at the Autonomous University of Barcelona. Her current research is focussed on the study of genome organization by combining computational and experimental methods, and by studying the genomes of different mammalian species.

Marc Stift, University of Konstanz, Germany


Marc Stift mainly works in the field of plant evolutionary genetics. He received his PhD from the University of Amsterdam, having studied hybridisation and (auto)polyploidisation in Rorippa (Brassicaceae). He then moved on to a postdoc at the University of Glasgow, to work on the breakdown of self-incompatibility in Arabidopsis lyrata (Brassicaceae). After another postdoc in Portugal (CIBIO, University of Porto) working on the invasive allopolyploid Aegilops cylindrica (Poaceae), he became assistant professor at the University of Konstanz. Ongoing research themes include mating system evolution (evolution of selfing) and evolution during and after invasion. Current study systems include a wide variety of plants, among which Solidago canadensis and S. gigantea (Asteraceae), Mimulus guttatus (Phrymaceae), Arabis alpina, Brassica nigra, Arabidopsis lyrata (Brassicaceae) and Gentiana asclepiadea (Gentianaceae)

Bastiaan Star, University of Oslo, Norway


Bastiaan Star is an evolutionary biologist at the University of Oslo, Norway. He obtained his PhD in population genetic theory at the University of Otago, New Zealand in 2008. His research ranges from investigating the impacts of anthropogenic pressures and climatic changes on marine resources to the characterization of host-associated microbiomes. His current interests include the role of structural genomic variation (chromosomal inversions, insertions/deletions) underlying population divergence and adaptation. He has a strong focus on using whole genome sequencing techniques, including ancient DNA (aDNA) approaches.

Paul Sunnucks, Monash University, Australia


Paul Sunnucks is a Professor in the School of Biological Sciences at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. He runs the Persistence and Adaptation Research Team, which is mainly concerned with evolutionary adaptation and population processes in wildlife, and the incorporation of evolutionary processes into conservation biology. Two major current research themes are: (1) ecophysiological adaptation and lineage divergence driven by mitonuclear interactions (evolutionary interactions between mitochondrial DNA genes and their nuclear partners), and (2) experimental genetic augmentation of wildlife species of conservation concern. His research informs his strong interactions with wildlife management agencies, and teaching in ecology and conservation.

Jinliang Wang, Institute of Zoology, London, UK

Jinliang Wang

Jinliang Wang is a theoretical population geneticist. He did his PhD at Northwestern Agricultural University in 1991, on a stochastic simulation study of the mating and selection strategies for the conservation of a population with long and overlapping generations. After a few years of teaching and research in several universities in China, he moved to Edinburgh University as a postdoc on population genetics in 1997. In 2000, he joined the Zoological Society of London's Institute of Zoology, first as a research fellow and then as a senior research fellow, to continue working on conservation genetics. His current research interests are in developing population/quantitative genetics models and methods on analysis of empirical data to address issues in evolutionary and conservation biology and in the selective improvement of domesticated species.

Chenwu Xu, Yangzhou University, P R China


Chenwu Xu is a professor in Yangzhou University, Jiangsu Province, P R China. He received his Ph.D. in Crop Genetics and Breeding from the Nanjing Agricultural University in 1998 and he was a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Department of Botany and Plant Science at the University of California, Riverside in 2002-2003. His current research focuses on statistical genomics, crop molecular evolution and maize genetics.

Xiangjiang Zhan, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China


Xiangjiang Zhan is a population genomicist who has worked with mammals but more recently with birds. He did his PhD in the Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. He did his postdoc at Cardiff University, UK. Six years later, he got a professorship in Chinese Academy of Sciences and has established a lab in Beijing. His current research focuses on population genomics, evolutionary genetics and ecology of animals, especially those living in extreme environments.

Yuan-Ming Zhang, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, China

Yuan-Ming Zhang

Yuan-Ming Zhang is a Professor who focuses on quantitative genetics research and specialized in methodologies for quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping and genome-wide association studies (GWAS). He received his Ph.D. from Nanjing Agricultural University on mixed major genes plus polygenes inheritance. He did his postdoctoral research at the University of California, Riverside, where he developed his interest in GWAS and QTL mapping. He worked in Nanjing Agricultural University from 1999 and moved to Huazhong Agricultural University in 2014, where he established the Statistical Genomics Laboratories. His current research interests include QTL mapping for quantitative traits, GWAS, comparative genomics, genetic mating design, and linkage group construction of distorted markers.