Thomas Fabbro

Universität Basel,
Zoologisches Institut
Vesalgasse 1
CH-4051 Basel


+41 (0)61 267 03 75

+41 (0)61 267 03 62


Thomas Fabbro


Current research

Most organisms live in a heterogeneous environment where biotic and abiotic environmental factors vary in space and time. Because it is unlikely that the same phenotype will confer high fitness under all environmental conditions, the expressing of different phenotypes within different environments is regarded as one possibility to cope with environmental heterogeneity. The phenomenon of a genotype to express different phenotypes is referred to as phenotypic plasticity. I am interested in evolution of plasticity and how it can be shaped by different selection pressures.

Quantitative Genetics using R, qgen
A collection of functions to analyse quantitative genetic data using the statistical software R. For detailed information have a look at the vignette of the package which is available on CRAN (the latest release is also available here).


Advanced Statistics using R, asuR
(probably September 2008)
All resources needed for the course are available as a package that you can install in R. It is called asuR and is available on CRAN (the latest release is also available here).
Especially the functions inspect and mancontr are of general interest (read the description).

Curriculum vitae

2002 Diploma in Biology, University of Basel, Switzerland
2002 - 2006 PhD at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland
2004 - 2006 Master degree in Statistics, University of Neuchatel, Switzerland


  • Fabbro, T., Davison, A. C. & Steinger, T. (2007) Reliable confidence intervals in quantitative genetics: narrow-sense heritability, Theoretical and Applied Genetics 115(7), 933-944.
  • Pusnik M., Small I., Read L.K., Fabbro T., Schneider A. (2007) Pentatricopeptide repeat proteins in T. brucei function in mitochondrial ribosomes, Molecular and Cellular Biology, 27(19): 6876-6888.
  • Körner Ch., Donoghue M., Fabbro T., Häuser Ch., Nogués-Bravo D., Kalin Arroyo M.T., Soberon J., Speers L., Spehn E.M., Sun H., Tribsch A., Tykarski P., and Zbinden N. (2007) Creative Use of Mountain Biodiversity Databases: The Kazbegi Research Agenda of GMBA-DIVERSITAS. Mountain Research and Development, 27(3), 276-281
  • Fabbro, T. & Körner, Ch. (2004) Altitudinal differences in flower traits and reproductive allocation, FLORA 199: 70-81. download pdf
  • Manuscripts in Preparation:
  • Fabbro, T. & Steinger, T. The Evolution of Plasticity: Direct and Indirect Selection, submitted.
  • Fabbro, T. & Steinger, T. Estimating the Phenotypic Variance of Plasticity, submitted.
  • Fabbro, T., Buchala, A. & Steinger, T. The Evolution of Induced Response in Sinapis arvensis.


A Master Bibliography Style file with biological journals. Have a look at it. There is a short introduction for those BibTeX users who have no idea what a "Master Bibliography Style" is.

Pictures from the Field Trip to Elba

Have here a look at pictures taken by Alexandra, Chantal, Keren, Lukas, Marion, and me.