Population genetics

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Population genetics

Population genetics

In the division of population genetics we study intraspecific genetic variation and the micro-evolutionary processes that govern this variation. Our broad interest is focused in finding out how and why genetic variation is structured within and among populations of animals over geographic space and time. We use genomic tools to investigate the genetic mechanisms behind important phenotypic traits affecting fitness in an evolutionary context. We use large scale genotyping of marker loci, computer simulations, and theoretical modelling to investigate how anthropogenic factors affect genetic biodiversity and how management can be designed to maintain of genetic variation in animal populations.

Monitoring genetic biodiversity in brown trout

The Lakes Bävervattnen Project is a unique long term study of natural brown trout populations in an undisturbed setting in the Hotagen Nature Reserve in central Sweden. We address a wide range of issues relating to microevolution and conservation genetics including methods for estimating and monitoring effective population size over space and time.

Functional genomics of life history evolution in Pieris napi

What are the genetic variants that help animals adaptation to their complex habitats? Using many different ‘omic tools, I am working with colleagues to answer this question for a range of adaptive phenotypes in the butterfly P. napi: diapause, wing patterning, polyphenism, polyandry, and immunity. Currently we are sequencing a high quality genome of this butterfly.

Large scale releases of salmon in the Baltic Sea

We have evaluated the conservation genetic risks for remaining wild salmon populations associated with compensatory releases of hatchery reared salmon into the Baltic Sea.

Colias butterfly color evolution

We are using genomic tools to investigate the evolution of color variation in Colias (Pieridae) butterflies. We are nearly finished with a revised phylogeny for all Pieridae using 8 genes, and will be adding as many Colias to this tree as we can.

Conservation genetic management of Swedish wolves

The Swedish wolf population is small, isolated and highly inbred. We address issues relating to the conservation genetic management of this, and similar populations.

Our latest publications

Antoine Paccard, Ben A. Wasserman, Dieta Hanson, Louis Astorg, Dan Durston, Sara Kurland, Travis M. Apgar, Rana W. El-Sabaawi, Eric P. Palkovacs, Andrew P. Hendry, Rowan D. H. Barrett. 2018. Adaptation in temporally variable environments - stickleback armor in periodically breaching bar-built estuaries. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 31: 735-752.

C. Obregón, A. R. Lyndon, J. Barker, H. Christiansen, B. J. Godley, Sara Kurland, J. J. Piccolo, R. Potts, R. Short, A. Tebb, S. Mariani. 2018. Valuing and understanding fish populations in the Anthropocene - key questions to address. Journal of Fish Biology 92: 828-845.

Vicencio Oostra, Marjo Saastamoinen, Bas J. Zwaan, Christopher W. Wheat. 2018. Strong phenotypic plasticity limits potential for evolutionary responses to climate change. Nature Communications 9.

Philipp Lehmann, Peter Pruisscher, Vladimir Kostal, Martin Moos, Petr Simek, Sören Nylin, Rasmus Agren, Leif Varemo, Christer Wiklund, Christopher W. Wheat, Karl Gotthard. 2018. Metabolome dynamics of diapause in the butterfly Pieris napi - distinguishing maintenance, termination and post-diapause phases. Journal of Experimental Biology 221.

Marjo Saastamoinen, Greta Bocedi, Julien Cote, Delphine Legrand, Frederic Guillaume, Christopher W. Wheat, Emanuel A. Fronhofer, Cristina Garcia, Roslyn Henry, Arild Husby, Michel Baguette, Dries Bonte, Aurelie Coulon, Hanna Kokko, Erik Matthysen, Kristjan Niitepold, Etsuko Nonaka, Virginie M. Stevens, Justin M. J. Travis, Kathleen Donohue, James M. Bullock, Maria del Mar Delgado. 2018. Genetics of dispersal. Biological Reviews 93: 574-599.

Christer Wiklund, Karin Norén, Nils Ryman, Magne Friberg. 2018. Local monophagy and between-site diversity in host use in the European swallowtail butterfly, Papilio machaon. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 123: 179-190.