Evolution & Adaptation

The focus of this theme is on understanding past and present evolutionary processes. This involves the measurement of adaptive changes in organisms via their phenotypic and genetic responses to environmental change.

Adaptation can be tracked at multiple levels of biological organisation, encompassing biological interactions, selective pressures generated by the environment, fitness relationships, extinction events, and the impact of selection, drift, mutation and migration on the genetic composition of populations.

The Partners have significant expertise in evolutionary and population genetics, evolutionary theory, genomic analysis, palaeobiology, palaeontology, systematics and taxonomy.

The DTP’s members are making world-leading contributions in contexts including: adaptation and the evolution of life histories, biostratigraphy and paleogeography, gene flow and population structure, genome and transcriptome evolution, human evolution, island populations and adaptation, the role of mass extinctions in evolution, microbial evolution, morphological, numerical and molecular methods in classification of extant and extinct organisms, origins of life, reconstruction of phylogenies, sexual selection and mate choice, speciation modes.

Exemplar Projects:

1st Supervisor Inst.: Project Title: 2nd Supervisor: Inst.:
Lane, Nick UCL The genomic architecture of mitochondria Jansen, Vincent RHUL
Mank, Judith UCL The evolution of guppy sex chromosomes, and their role in sexually selected traits
Brekke, Patricia IOZ Why do eggs fail? Balloux, Francois UCL
Underwood, Charlie BBK Mineralisation in the chondrichthyan vertebral column: evolutionary patterns and functional diversity Johanson, Zerina NHM
Elphick, Maurice QMUL Reconstructing the evolutionary history of neuropeptide signalling in the phylum Echinodermata Ewin, Tim NHM
Riesch, Rüdiger RHUL Examining the processes that generate, maintain, and threaten biological diversity

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  1. Apply now for our 2017 PhD Programme - The London NERC DTP | The London NERC DTP

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