Projects & Grants
|Hybrid zones and the dynamics of evolution of asexuality among European loaches (Cobitis)
|doc. Mgr. Pavel Drozd, Ph.D.
|1/2009 - 12/2013
|Standardní projekt GA ČR
|The evolution of sex and asexuality resist understanding despite more than century of intensive research. Both empirical case studies and theoretical testing of extant models as well as the development of new one are need. In this project we use Cobitis taenia hybrid complex as a model group to evaluate the role of hybridisation in the evolution of asexuality and assess various aspects, which are putatively important in the maintenance of sex. So far we have assessed how and when have the asexuality and polyploidy arisen in this complex and our data suggest that one of the parental species is itself of hybrid origin. Here, we integrate empirical population genetic study of interactions between parental species and hybrids in the natural environment with theoretical modelling of mechanisms maintaining sex. Such approach will allow for comparisons of observed patterns to simulated predictions. We shall test for the effect of genetic divergence between hybridising genomes on the evolution of asexual lineages by comparing two hybrid zones involving species with different relatedness, assess the dynamics of clonal recruitments and its effect on long-term performance of clones and study the effect of clonal diversity on host-parasite interactions.