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At the moment we are working on the Genomic Basis of Adaptation to Climate Change.
Some species have little capacity to adapt to changing environment, possibly due to DNA “decay”. It is important that this is identified across multiple groups and environments so that predictive models of biodiversity response to climate change can be produced which can be used in management strategies to preserve diversity across multiple groups of species. Within this program, twenty species of Drosophilids are to be studied, of which fourteen are currently being cultured in our lab.
We are presently in the process of inbreeding the afore-mentioned species, some of which belong to the genus Scaptodrosophila. Little is known about these species which creates additional difficulties. Our challenge on a daily basis is to ensure that everything goes smoothly for all of the species in our care.
Our expertise involves investigating environmental stresses on Drosophila spp.. These include heat, cold, body size, desiccation and starvation, examining the evolution of life history plasticity in D. melanogaster as well as understanding the role that chromosomal inversions play in climatic adaptation.