How do new species arise and how do closely related species maintain their integrity despite hybridization? Notwithstanding the central position of these questions in the fields of evolutionary and conservation biology, few biologists have provided answers. Here, I will address these questions using a multidisciplinary approach combining genomics, lab experiments and field work. The key objectives of this project is to determine the factors that lead to genomic divergence between closely related and hybridizing species and characterise DNA sequence changes that are associated with pre- and postzygotic barriers to species exchange with emphasis on the role of the X chromosome. Training-through-research includes a secondment to another lab to improve skills in animal breeding and experiments. This action will also generate new resources to the scientific community (a damselfly genomics toolkit), and efficiently disseminate knowledge to the public. Due to its multidisciplinary approach and many opportunities for collaboration, executing this research program will provide new avenues of research for my future career as independent researcher within the EU. The excellent supervision and state of art infrastructure at the host lab will ensure the successful execution of this project.
Fields of science
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