Anna Runemark lab
Genomic and phenotypic adaptation to niche shifts
Using host plant specific subspecies of the fly T. conura we investigate the adaptations following host plant shifts and identify the areas in the genome associated with these phenotypic characters. A new niche implies altered selection pressures on several aspects of the phenotype, and this will generate correlational selection for certain combinations of traits/loci. Ultimately we aim to address how non-physical LD arise when several genomically unlinked loci are selected to be coinherited, and how this process affects both genetic variation and evolvability.
The roles of coding genetic divergence, regulatory divergence and methylation in host plant adaptation
Adaptation to new environments and selection pressures can be either plastic or genetic. We investigate whether the relative contribution of these different mechanisms differs between populations that are facultatively using two different host plants and would be predicted to benefit from plastic responses, and these that are host plant specialists. We also use this system to address the fitness consequences of generalist behavior and specialization within the same species.
The genomic architecture of reproductive isolation in homoploid hybrid Passer italiae
Hybrid species have genetic variation from two divergent parent species, and this provides excellent opportunities to address how interactions between different parts of the genome have shaped genome evolution as the origin of genomic regions can be identified. Taking advantage of this we address which genes are involved in reproductive isolation a) through identifying regions where Dobzhansky-Muller Incompatibilities have been purged through reversion to the ancestral state and b) through investigating the role of epistatic interactions in the large effect of the Z chromosome. We also investigate the role of Transposable Elements (TEs) in hybrid genome formation in collaboration with Dr. Alexander Suh and whether methylation can cause or remedy incompatibilities in collaboration with Dr. Marjorie Lienard. My PhD-student Caroline Ø Guldvog is working on three of these projects and is co-supervised by Prof. Glenn-Peter Sætre.