Dr. Parvin Shahrestani, BiologICAL SCIENCE


  • Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Science, California State University Fullerton, 2015 – present.
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Laboratory of Dr. Brian Lazzaro, Department of Entomology, Cornell University, 2012 – 2015.  
  • Lecturer, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California Irvine, 2011 – 2012.
  • Adjunct Professor, Biology Department, Santa Ana College, 2010 – 2012.
  • Ph.D. Biological Sciences, University of California Irvine, 2011.                
  • B.S. Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California Irvine, Latin honors, 2006.

Research Areas

My laboratory’s goals are to identify genes affecting health-relevant phenotypes, specifically aging and immune defense, and to study the dynamics of evolutionary change in sexual organisms, such as the trajectories of allele frequencies throughout soft selective sweeps. We use the genetic model organism Drosophila melanogaster, which has short generation times that lend nicely to studies of experimental evolution and provide the added advantage of allowing undergraduate and Master’s students to see evolution projects through from beginning to end.


  1. Shahrestani, P., Birse, R., Burke, M.K., Mueller, L.D., Ocorr, K., Rose, M.R., and Bodmer, R. Experimental evolution of heart function inDrosophila. In review.
  2. Shahrestani, P., Wilson, J., Mueller, L.D., and Rose, M.R. Experimental evolution of late-life physiology in Drosophila melanogaster. In review.
  3. Mueller, L.D., Shahrestani, P., Rauser C.L., and Rose, M.R. 2016. The death spiral: predicting death in Drosophila cohorts.Biogereontology 17: 1-12.
  4. Burke, M.K., King, E.G., Shahrestani, P., Rose, M.R., and Long, A.D. 2014. Genome-wide association study of extreme longevity inDrosophila melanogaster. Genome Biology and Evolution 6: 1-11.
  5. Hammel, S., East, K., Shaka, A.J., Rose, M.R., and Shahrestani, P. 2013. Brief early-life non-specific incorporation of deuterium extends mean life span in Drosophila melanogaster without affecting fecundity. Rejuvenation Research 16: 98-104.
  6. Shahrestani, P., Tran, X., and Mueller, L.D. 2012. Physiology declines prior to death in Drosophila melanogaster. Biogerontology 13: 537-545.
  7. Shahrestani, P. Aging: an evolutionarily derived condition. 2012. Frontiers in Genetics 3: 187.
  8. Rose, M.R., Flatt, T., Graves, J.L., Greer, L.F., Martinez, D.E., Matos, M.M., Mueller, L.D.,
  9. Shmookler Reis, R.J., and Shahrestani, P. 2012. What is aging? Frontiers in Genetics3: 134.
  10. Shahretani, P., Tran, X., and Mueller, L.D. 2012. Patterns of male fitness conform to predictions of evolutionary models of late life. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 25: 1060-1065.
  11. Shahrestani, P., Quach, J., Mueller, L.D., and Rose, M.R. 2012. Paradoxical physiological transitions from aging to late life inDrosophila. Rejuvenation Research 15: 49-58.
  12. Burke, M.K., Dunham, J.P., Shahrestani, P., Thornton, K.R., Rose, M.R., and Long, A.D. 2010. Genome-wide analysis of a long-term evolution experiment with Drosophila. Nature 467: 587-590.
  13. Shahrestani, P., Leung, H., Le, P.K., Pak, W.L., Tse, S., Ocorr, K., and Huang, T. 2009. Heterozygous mutation of Drosophila Opa1 causes the development of multiple organ abnormalities in an age-dependent and organ-specific manner. PLoS One 4: e6867.7.
  14. Shahrestani, P., Mueller, L.D., and Rose, M.R. 2009. Does aging stop? Current Aging Science 2: 3-11.8.
  15. Mueller, D., Shahrestani, P., and Rauser, C.L. 2009. Predicting death in female Drosophila. Experimental Gerontology 44: 766–772.
  16. Rose, M.R., Burke, M.K., Shahrestani, P., and Mueller, L.D. 2008. Evolution of ageing since Darwin. Journal of Genetics 87: 363-371.
  17. Sepulveda, S., Shojaeian, P., Rauser, C.L., Jafari, M., Mueller, L.D., and Rose, M.R. 2008. Interactions between injury, stress resistance, reproduction, and aging in Drosophila melanogaster. Experimental Gerontology 43: 136-145.

Grants & Special Projects

National Institutes of Health, NRSA Postdoctoral fellowship. Project: The genomic basis for adaptation to a fungal pathogen. 2013 – 2015

National Science Foundation. Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant. Project: Experimental evolution of the cessation of aging. 2009 – 2011