Undergraduate Researcher in the Servedio Lab
How do new species form? The formation of new species – ‘speciation’ – is still not fully understood, and remains a fruitful avenue of research. Here, we propose to investigate the implication of the evolution of genetic architecture (i.e., the location of genes along the genome) for the evolution of reproductive isolation (i.e., the inability of an incipient species to breed successfully with other incipient species) that eventually leads to the emergence of distinct species.
We recently analyzed a simple mathematical model, and we showed that the genetic architecture of the traits underlying speciation should not evolve as usually thought. This preliminary result is very promising with important implications for the interpretations of current genomic data. In order to understand the significance of the results derived from this simple model, we need to determine whether the predictions made hold with a more complex multi-loci genetic architecture, as observed in nature. To develop this project, we are hiring an undergraduate student to develop and analyze an individual-based model in order to study how genetic loci may co-localize along the genome during speciation. This would provide an educational experience for the student that could lead to contributions of significant scientific value. For more details on the project and mentoring plan, student candidates can contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Payment: $7,250 stipend, for approximately 20 weeks at 10hrs/week during the semesters plus 35hrs/week for 8 weeks in the summer (at $15/hr).
Student candidates must send:
1) a list of relevant coursework and grades obtained,
2) a brief description of their research or programming experience,
3) a brief statement of their interest in the project,
4) a brief diversity statement
to email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org