Investigating hybridization

The process of hybridization has raised a lot of attention recently, and its significance and consequences for speciation and adaptation are among the most intriguing questions in evolutionary biology.
cores Daphnia
Bild: Layered sediment cores in pseudocolours, a Daphnia water flea and its resting eggs (Credit: M. Möst)

The Austrian Science Fund, FWF, has recently approved Markus Möst’s stand-alone project to study genome-wide gene flow in the Daphnia longispina complex. The process of hybridization has raised a lot of attention recently, and its significance and consequences for speciation and adaptation are among the most intriguing questions in evolutionary biology. Aim of this project is to investigate hybridization and gene flow between members of the Daphnia longispina water flea species complex, which are keystone species in European peri-Alpine lakes. Over the coming four years, this research will quantify gene flow, assess the impact of environmental change on the extent of gene flow and species integrity, and identify adaptations to environmental perturbations. This project will apply an innovative interdisciplinary approach that integrates population and speciation genomics, sedimentology, and environmental science to study gene flow and adaptation over time, involving national and international collaborators.