Martin Kapun


The evolution of insects in changing environments: From population genetics to host-symbiont interactions

Naturhistorisches Museum Wien


Clines, which are gradual changes of genotypes or phenotypes along environmental transects, are often taken as prima facie evidence for the action of spatially varying selection which may be fueled by the accelerating climate change. However, only due to recent advances in sequencing technology it now becomes possible to compare genome-wide clinal patterns and test for alternative models. In my seminar, I will present genome-wide analyses of genomic variation in the fruit-fly D. melanogaster densely sampled through time and space on different continents, where I tested for associations between genetic and environmental variation. These analyses reveal complex demographic patterns and pronounced clinal genetic variation along different geographical and environmental transects, which are often shaped by chromosomal inversions. In the second part of my talk, I will show how genomic data of sister species of dung-flies of the genus Sepsis allow to identify the effects of environmental variation on incipient speciation. Moreover, based on amplicon-sequencing data, I will present how the microbiomes of co-occurring sepsid flies vary across species and seasons. Finally, I will give a short outlook on recent research with a bioinformatic focus at the Natural History Museum Vienna.