Do repetetive elements contribute contribute to variation in chromosome structure between populations?


Much of an animal's genome is made up from selfish genetic elements. They can inviade populations and spread rapidly and have the potetial to cause large-scale chromosomal rearrangements. The social huntsman spider Delena cancerides has exteme variation in chromsomal structure between populations. This can lead to unusual features, such as genome-wide asymmetric chromosomal segregation between the sexes. This project focuses on understanding the causes and consequences of genomic variation in Delena. It project should reveal how chromosomes evolve, and the consequences of these events for populations and species.

There are two sub-projects:

  • We would like to identify repetitive elements within its genome and to see whether they vary in abundance across populations of different chromosomal types. We already have sequence data, and this project will focus on comparing long-read and short-read sequencing approaches for identifying repetitive elements.
  • Constructing a linkage map of D. cancerides to confirm that sexes within a brood have asymmetric relatedness (like that of hymenopteran social insects).

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Updated:  18 August 2019/Responsible Officer:  Director RSB/Page Contact:  Webmaster RSB