Bee and octopus lineages show remarkable species-specific novelties in behavior and nervous system organization. Bees are ancestrally solitary, but bumblebees and other social bees have gained complex communication systems and behavioral traits to support collective living and reproductive division of labor. The multi-lobed central brains of coleoid (soft-bodied) cephalopods, such as octopuses, represent a major elaboration of the molluscan central nervous system ground plan. At the same time, many core mechanisms for nervous system function, from axonal guidance molecules to neurotransmitters, are highly conserved between vertebrates and invertebrates. The combination of conservation, convergence, and innovation in invertebrate lineages presents a unique opportunity to study open questions in the neurobiology of senescence. Click below for an overview of our research projects.