Evolution of reproductive isolation in brown algae

Advisor: Agnieszka Lipinska 

PhD Program: International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) 'From Molecules to Organisms'
Location: Max Planck Institute for Biology

Project description
The Department of Algal Development and Evolution has a diverse research program covering, among others, the evolution of sexual systems, genomics of sex chromosomes and regulation of developmental pathways in diverse species of algae using state-of-the-art molecular biology and bioinformatics approaches. One of the research questions we set out to explore is dedicated to the evolution of reproductive isolation and speciation using the brown algal model system EctocarpusEctocarpus represents a complex of 15 species at different levels of divergence for which 13 complete genomes are currently being generated. The objective of this project is to extend our knowledge about how reproductive barriers evolve and to determine how speciation is influenced by genomic constraints in species with haploid-diploid life cycles and UV sex chromosomes. To date, most of the studies that have addressed the questions of the evolution of reproductive barriers and the role of sex chromosomes in speciation have focused on a handful of plant and animal organisms. Moreover, the role of UV sex chromosomes in speciation has never been studied. The project aims to address two major topics, the underlying genomic architecture of pre- and post-zygotic reproductive barriers in a group of species with increasing divergence time, and the effect of uniparentally inherited factors (UV sex chromosomes and mitochondria) on hybrid fitness and viability.

More information about the research of Agnieszka Lipinska and a selection of recent publications can be found on her faculty page.

To apply:

Application deadline: 8 February 2023

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