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Well known for his pictures of sheep buttocks, Michel studies complex traits caused by multiple genes and their interaction with the environment as well as genes whose effects differ depending on whether they are inherited from mum or dad, an effect known as imprinting. Small-bummed sheep develop when a mutation in the Callipyge or ‘beautiful buttocks’ region of the genome is inherited from dad. Is Michel really interested in sheep’s buttocks? Not really, he believes in research for the sake of knowledge and wants to understand unusual inheritance patterns and if that means sheep’s buttocks, then so be it.