Archives par étiquette : Fourmi

Poste IR CNRS NOEMI : écologie des fourmis

chers collègues,
notre labo reçoit un poste d’Ingénieur.e de Recherche CNRS (campagne de mobilité interne NOEMI) sur l’écologie des fourmis envahissantes, à l’Université Paris Saclay (Ecologie, Sytématique & Evolution, anciennement Orsay).

Il s’agit d’un poste aux activités assez variées, dans de bonnes conditions (bât et labos neufs, UMR saine) et dans une équipe à la très bonne ambiance, avec de la recherche de qualité. En région parisienne, mais suffisamment éloigné de Paris pour en avoir les avantage sans les inconvénients.

N’hésitez pas à faire suivre cette annonce autours de vous dans votre laboratoire et au délà, le vivier de personnes pouvant candidater étant assez limité (personnes déjà en poste dans la recherche/enseignement public, avec une thèse de doctorat et si avec une expérience sur les insectes sociaux, ou une volonté de l’acquérir rapidement).

Les candidatures se feront sur le site du CNRS du 5 décembre 2022 au 16 janvier 2023. L’annonce n’y est pas encore postée (je n’ai donc pas encore le lien).
Plus d’infos ici: https://www.biodiversitydynamics.fr/ecologie-des-fourmis-envahissantes/
En cas d’intérêt, n’hésitez pas à me contacter pour toute question sur le poste, sur notre équipe/labo ou sur nos recherches.

Nous nous réjouissons de vous accueillir parmi nous!
Franck, pour toute l’équipe

 

Franck Courchamp

Biodiversity Dynamics & Macroecology 

Lab of Ecologie, Systematique & Evolution

Biological Invasion AXA Chair

 

Tel : +33 (0)1 69 15 56 85

Web : https://www.biodiversitydynamics.fr/

Blog : http://biodiversitydynamics.wordpress.com/

Please note my new email address: franck.courchamp@cnrs.fr

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Offre de thèse : en agroécologie/écologie au Cirad sur l’île de la Réunion

Veuillez trouver ci-joint une proposition de thèse complétement financées sur la thématique des « Interactions cochenilles-fourmis dans les systèmes de culture d’ananas à la Réunion » au Cirad au sein de l’unité de recherche GECO (https://ur-geco.cirad.fr/). Le doctorant sera inscrit à l’école doctorale GAIA de Montpellier.

voir aussi : https://www.adum.fr/as/ed/voirproposition.pl?print=oui&matricule_prop=41340

Nous recherchons un étudiant ayant le gout pour l’écologie comportementale et expérimentale. Des compétences dans la manipulation des arthropodes et dans l’analyse d’images serait un plus.

Pour toute question et pour postuler, n’hésitez pas à me contacter.

Philippe Tixier

CIRAD – Persyst – UPR GECO
TA B-26/C – bureau 205
Campus international de Baillarguet – 34398 Montpellier Cedex 5 – France
Tél : +33 4 67 61 59 90
Email: tixier@cirad.fr
Site: http://tinyurl.com/tixier
https://ur-geco.cirad.fr/

Postdoc : Ant population genomics, social supergene evolution at the university of Lausanne

A Postdoctoral position is available in the group of Prof. Michel Chapuisat at the Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Lausanne, Switzerland. The group studies social evolution. We are currently investigating the origin, evolution, and mechanisms of action of a supergene controlling social organization across Formica ants (see http://www.unil.ch/dee/page7000.html). Recent research showed that some species have three supergene haplotypes. F. selysi and F. cinerea commonly hybridize, raising the possibility of supergene introgression. The postdoctoral researcher will generate and analyse population genomics data to uncover key processes governing supergene evolution, including selection, genetic load, drive and introgression. This project will shed light on how supergenes arise, spread and shape complex alternative phenotypes.

Your responsibilities:
You will study the evolution of a social supergene. This will involve field sampling of multiple ant species, population analyses (e.g. sex-ratio, male production), sequencing, population genomic, comparative genomic, and phylogenomic analyses. Depending on your personal interests and skills, projects on genome evolution, molecular evolution, behavioural genetics and ecological genomics are also possible.

Your qualifications:
We are seeking to recruit an early carrier post-doctoral researcher with a PhD degree in evolutionary biology, genetics, genomics, bioinformatics or related fields. The ideal candidate should have skills and experience in one or more of the following fields: population biology, population genetics, comparative genomics, phylogenetics, ecological genomics, molecular evolution. The candidate should have a convincing publication track-record, excellent inter-personal skills and a strong ability to work in a team.

Job information:
Expected start date in position: 01.08.2022 (or at earliest convenience)
Contract length: 1 year, renewable for up to 5 years depending on funding available
Activity rate: 100%
Workplace: Lausanne – Dorigny

What the position offers you:
We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment, with opportunities for professional training. The Department of Ecology and Evolution in Lausanne University hosts research groups working on a broad range of topics, producing a rich intellectual and social life. The working language in the group and in the Department is English for all scientific matters. Good command of English is needed, some knowledge of French would be a plus, but is not mandatory. The University of Lausanne offers state-of-the-art facilities, including excellent computer facilities and molecular labs.

Contact for further information:
Prof. Michel Chapuisat: Michel.Chapuisat@unil.ch

Your application:
Deadline: 01.06.2022.
Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the position is filled.
To apply, please upload a single pdf document containing: a cover letter with a short description of your research interests, research experience, and why you are interested in joining our group; Your CV; The contact details of 2-3 referees; A copy of your PhD degree. Ideally, you should have received your PhD within the last 2 years or be about to obtain it in the next four months.

To receive full consideration, application documents should be uploaded online through the University of Lausanne recruitment platform.
Please apply through this webpage: https://bit.ly/3vV1FwX

Offres de thèse (x2) : ANT POPULATION GENOMICS & SOCIAL SUPERGENE DRIVE

UNIVERSITY OF LAUSANNEApplication deadlines: 15 January 2022 and 1 February 2022 (Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the positions are filled)Two Ph.D. positions (graduate assistants) in evolutionary biology are available in the group of Prof. Michel Chapuisat at the Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Lausanne, Switzerland. The successful candidates will join a group studying the evolution and genomic basis of social organization in ants (see http://www.unil.ch/dee/page7000.html).1) THE EVOLUTION OF SUPERCOLONIALITYThe objective of the Ph.D. will be to investigate the evolution of supercoloniality in ants of the genus Formica. In the Swiss Jura mountains, the native wood ant Formica paralugubris forms large supercolonies, with hundreds of nests connected by trails and hundreds of queens in each nest. The evolution of such supercolonies is still poorly understood. High-throughput sequencing and population genomic analyses will provide high-resolution information on population structure, dispersal patterns, symbionts, and genomic basis of colony traits such as sex ratio. Comparative analyses will reveal if the supergene controlling polymorphic social organization in other Formica species has been fixed or lost in F. paralugubris, and if the same genes and alleles are associated with high colony queen number across the genus.Your responsibilities:You will develop research on the evolution of ant sociality and supercoloniality. This will involve field sampling, sequencing, population genomic and comparative genomic analyses. Depending on your interests and skills, behavioural and ecological experiments are also possible.Your qualifications:In order to complete our team, we are looking for someone with a Master’s degree in biology, life sciences, genetics, bioinformatics, or related subjects. Applicants should have knowledge and skills pertaining to evolutionary biology, population genetics, molecular evolution and/or behavioural ecology. We are looking for a creative and driven person with excellent interpersonal skills.Job information:Expected start date in position: 01.03.2022 (or at earliest convenience)Contract length: The initial contract is for 1 year, renewable twice for two years, up to a maximum of 5 years in totalActivity rate: 85%Workplace: Lausanne – DorignyWhat the position offers you:We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment, with opportunities for professional training. The Department of Ecology and Evolution in Lausanne University hosts research groups working on a broad range of topics, producing a rich intellectual and social life. The working language in the group and in the Department is English for all scientific matters. Good command of English is needed, some knowledge of French would be a plus, but is not mandatory. The University of Lausanne offers state-of-the-art facilities, including excellent computer facilities and molecular labs.Contact for further information:Prof. Michel Chapuisat : Michel.Chapuisat@unil.chYour application:Deadline: 15.01.2022Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the position is filled.To apply, please upload a single pdf document containing: a cover letter with a short description of your research interests, research experience, and why you are interested in joining our group; Your CV; The contact details of 2-3 referees; A copy of your Master degree; Your Master’s thesis summary.To receive full consideration, application documents should be uploaded online through the University of Lausanne recruitment platform. Please apply through this webpage: https://bit.ly/3rRa0Ak2) SELFISH SUPERGENE IN ANTSThe objective of the Ph.D. will be to investigate the mechanisms by which a social supergene distorts Mendelian transmission. In the Alpine silver ant, Formica selysi, a large supergene controls colony social organization, and the haplotype associated with multiple-queen colonies selfishly distorts transmission by killing progeny that did not inherit this haplotype. In collaboration with the team, you will identify the selfish genetic element and characterize the process causing brood developmental arrest. The research will provide insights into the role of selfish genetic elements in the evolution of supergenes controlling complex phenotypes.Your responsibilities:You will develop research on selfish genetic elements (toxin-antidote elements) present in supergenes. This will involve field sampling, breeding experiments, molecular analyses (transcriptomics, proteomics, RNAi), developmental studies, and genome analyses.Your qualifications:In order to complete our team, we are looking for someone with a Master’s degree in biology, life sciences, genetics, or related subjects. Applicants should have knowledge and skills pertaining to evolutionary biology, genetics, development, or behavioural ecology. We are looking for a creative and driven person with excellent interpersonal skills.Job information:Expected start date in position: 01.04.2022 (or at earliest convenience)Contract length: The initial contract is for 1 year, renewable twice for two years, up to a maximum of 5 years in totalActivity rate: 85%Workplace: Lausanne – DorignyWhat the position offers you:We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment, with opportunities for professional training. The Department of Ecology and Evolution in Lausanne University hosts research groups working on a broad range of topics, producing a rich intellectual and social life. The working language in the group and in the Department is English for all scientific matters. Good command of English is needed, some knowledge of French would be a plus, but is not mandatory. The University of Lausanne offers state-of-the-art facilities, including excellent computer facilities and molecular labs.Contact for further information:Prof. Michel Chapuisat : Michel.Chapuisat@unil.chYour application:Deadline: 01.02.2022Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the position is filled.To apply, please upload a single pdf document containing: a cover letter with a short description of your research interests, research experience, and why you are interested in joining our group; Your CV; The contact details of 2-3 referees; A copy of your Master degree; Your Master’s thesis summary.To receive full consideration, application documents should be uploaded online through the University of Lausanne recruitment platform. Please apply through this webpage: https://bit.ly/3oDPO2T

Offre de Postdoc : THE GENOMIC BASIS OF SOCIAL NICHE CONSTRUCTION DURING COLONY FOUNDING

POSTDOC: THE GENOMIC BASIS OF SOCIAL NICHE CONSTRUCTION DURING COLONY FOUNDING, MÜNSTER, GERMANYDeadline for applications: 6 January 2022The Institute for Evolution and Biodiversity at the University of Münster, Germany, is seeking to fill the position of a Postdoctoral Research Associate (Wissenschaftliche/r Mitarbeiter/in – salary level TV-L E 13, 100%) from the earliest possible date. The position is within the externally funded project SFB/TRR 212. We are offering a fixed-term full-time position until 31 December 2025 corresponding to the duration of the project.Your tasks:The position is part of the Collaborative Research Centre (SFB/TRR 212) entitled « A Novel Synthesis of Individualisation across Behaviour, Ecology and Evolution: Niche Choice, Niche Conformance, Niche Construction » (NC3: https://www.unibielefeld. de/fakultaeten/biologie/forschung/verbuende/sfb_nc3/3) and funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG).The project focuses on the genetic, epigenetic and transcriptomic basis of social niche construction during colony founding. Individual Pogonomyrmex californicus ant queens can choose to start a new colony alone (haplometrosis) or they can join or accept other co-founding queens (pleometrosis). During the first two weeks of colony founding, co-founding queens interact in multiple ways and so construct their individualized social niche. They either accept additional queens or they evict/kill them. Matched interactions, where pleometrotic queens interact with each other, lead to a fitness gain whereas mismatched interactions, where haplometrotic and pleometrotic queens interact, lead to a fitness loss (for one or both). The frequency of these alternative founding strategies varies within and among subpopulations. The first funding period revealed the genomic and genetic architecture of this social niche polymorphism. In the second funding period, we will focus on three aims.Confirming and experimentally testing candidate genes and epigenetic mechanisms (histone modification and DNA methylation), that we identified in the first funding period.Develop a generalized evolutionary framework/model that takes into account the relation between genotype, phenotype, individualized social niche and fitness.Understand why colony founding above a certain number of cofounding pleometrotic queens will always fail. Is this a constraint (division of labour) or an adaptation (spitefulness) in the context of the evolution of pleometrosis.The successful candidate will conduct behavioural field and laboratory studies in cooperation with Prof Jennifer Fewell (Arizona State University) in Arizona and California. The secondary emphasis will be on transcriptomic, genomic and epigenetic studies using a variety of methods (dsRNAi, ATACseq, ChIP-seq and pharmacological interventions). Hence practical familiarity and experience with some genomic techniques and bioinformatic tools is required (ideally demonstrated through publications).Our expectations:The successful candidate will be a highly motivated scientist, interested in interdisciplinary work in the framework of the NC3 network. They will have a doctoral degree (or a comparable qualification) in biology, preferentially with a focus on evolution, behavioural ecology, sociobiology, genomics, epigenetics or another related field. They will also have a background, and ideally some postdoctoral experience, in at least two of the following areas: working with live insects, molecular lab skills, genomics/transcriptomics and bioinformatics. They will have excellent communication skills and be able to work both independently and as part of a multidisciplinary team. The working language of the Institute and the lab is English, and good proficiency in spoken and written English is a requirement. German language skills are not a requirement, but a willingness to learn is desirable.Advantages for you:The Institute for Evolution and Biodiversity provides a stimulating research environment with a number of scientific groups researching diverse topics centred on different aspects of evolution. As a part of the Collaborative Research Centre SFB/TRR 212 the project will involve intensive collaboration with consortium partners at the Universities of Münster and Bielefeld. The University of Münster is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to increasing the proportion of women academics. Consequently, we actively encourage applications by women. Female candidates with equivalent qualifications and academic achievements will be preferentially considered within the framework of the legal possibilities. The University of Münster is committed to employing more staff with disabilities. Candidates with recognised severe disabilities who have equivalent qualifications are given preference in hiring decisions, although some restrictions related to the access to field sites may apply. Positions can generally be filled as part-time positions if there are no compelling work-related reasons against doing so.Are you interested?Then we look forward to receiving your application, written in English, in one single PDF file, by 6 January 2022. Applications should be sent to Prof Jürgen Gadau at: gadauj@uni-muenster.de. Please note that we cannot consider other file formats. Applications should include 1) a cover letter with a statement of research interests and motivation (max. 1 page), 2) a CV including details about research experience and publications, and 3) contact details for at least two referees.45,000 students and 8,000 employees in teaching, research and administration, all working together to shape perspectives for the future – that is the University of Münster (WWU). Embedded in the vibrant atmosphere of Münster with its high standard of living, the University’s diverse research profile and attractive study programmes draw students and researchers throughout Germany and from around the world.

Offre de thèses : Ant population genomics & social supergene drive, University of Lausanne

2 PhD POSITIONS: Ant population genomics & social supergene drive, University of Lausanne



Two Ph.D. positions (graduate assistants) in evolutionary biology are available in the group of Prof. Michel Chapuisat at the Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Lausanne, Switzerland. The successful candidates will join a group studying the evolution and genomic basis of social organization in ants (see http://www.unil.ch/dee/page7000.html).

1) THE EVOLUTION OF SUPERCOLONIALITY

The objective of the Ph.D. will be to investigate the evolution of supercoloniality in ants of the genus Formica. In the Swiss Jura mountains, the native wood ant Formica paralugubris forms large supercolonies, with hundreds of nests connected by trails and hundreds of queens in each nest. The evolution of such supercolonies is still poorly understood. High-throughput sequencing and population genomic analyses will provide high-resolution information on population structure, dispersal patterns, symbionts, and genomic basis of colony traits such as sex ratio. Comparative analyses will reveal if the supergene controlling polymorphic social organization in other Formica species has been fixed or lost in F. paralugubris, and if the same genes and alleles are associated with high colony queen number across the genus.

Your responsibilities:
You will develop research on the evolution of ant sociality and supercoloniality. This will involve field sampling, sequencing, population genomic and comparative genomic analyses. Depending on your interests and skills, behavioural and ecological experiments are also possible.

Your qualifications:
In order to complete our team, we are looking for someone with a Master’s degree in biology, life sciences, genetics, bioinformatics, or related subjects. Applicants should have knowledge and skills pertaining to evolutionary biology, population genetics, molecular evolution and/or behavioural ecology. We are looking for a creative and driven person with excellent interpersonal skills.

Job information:
Expected start date in position: 01.03.2022 (or at earliest convenience)
Contract length: The initial contract is for 1 year, renewable twice for two years, up to a maximum of 5 years in total
Activity rate: 85%
Workplace: Lausanne – Dorigny

What the position offers you:
We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment, with opportunities for professional training. The Department of Ecology and Evolution in Lausanne University hosts research groups working on a broad range of topics, producing a rich intellectual and social life. The working language in the group and in the Department is English for all scientific matters. Good command of English is needed, some knowledge of French would be a plus, but is not mandatory. The University of Lausanne offers state-of-the-art facilities, including excellent computer facilities and molecular labs.

Contact for further information:
Prof. Michel Chapuisat : Michel.Chapuisat@unil.ch

Your application:
Deadline: 15.01.2022
Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the position is filled.

To apply, please upload a single pdf document containing: a cover letter with a short description of your research interests, research experience, and why you are interested in joining our group; Your CV; The contact details of 2-3 referees; A copy of your Master degree; Your Master’s thesis summary.

To receive full consideration, application documents should be uploaded online through the University of Lausanne recruitment platform. 
Please apply through this webpage: https://bit.ly/3rRa0Ak

2) SELFISH SUPERGENE IN ANTS

The objective of the Ph.D. will be to investigate the mechanisms by which a social supergene distorts Mendelian transmission. In the Alpine silver ant, Formica selysi, a large supergene controls colony social organization, and the haplotype associated with multiple-queen colonies selfishly distorts transmission by killing progeny that did not inherit this haplotype. In collaboration with the team, you will identify the selfish genetic element and characterize the process causing brood developmental arrest. The research will provide insights into the role of selfish genetic elements in the evolution of supergenes controlling complex phenotypes.

Your responsibilities:
You will develop research on selfish genetic elements (toxin-antidote elements) present in supergenes. This will involve field sampling, breeding experiments, molecular analyses (transcriptomics, proteomics, RNAi), developmental studies, and genome analyses.

Your qualifications:
In order to complete our team, we are looking for someone with a Master’s degree in biology, life sciences, genetics, or related subjects. Applicants should have knowledge and skills pertaining to evolutionary biology, genetics, development, or behavioural ecology. We are looking for a creative and driven person with excellent interpersonal skills.

Job information:
Expected start date in position: 01.04.2022 (or at earliest convenience)
Contract length: The initial contract is for 1 year, renewable twice for two years, up to a maximum of 5 years in total
Activity rate: 85%
Workplace: Lausanne – Dorigny

What the position offers you:
We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment, with opportunities for professional training. The Department of Ecology and Evolution in Lausanne University hosts research groups working on a broad range of topics, producing a rich intellectual and social life. The working language in the group and in the Department is English for all scientific matters. Good command of English is needed, some knowledge of French would be a plus, but is not mandatory. The University of Lausanne offers state-of-the-art facilities, including excellent computer facilities and molecular labs.

Contact for further information:
Prof. Michel Chapuisat : Michel.Chapuisat@unil.ch

Your application:
Deadline: 01.02.2022
Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the position is filled.

To apply, please upload a single pdf document containing: a cover letter with a short description of your research interests, research experience, and why you are interested in joining our group; Your CV; The contact details of 2-3 referees; A copy of your Master degree; Your Master’s thesis summary.

To receive full consideration, application documents should be uploaded online through the University of Lausanne recruitment platform. 
Please apply through this webpage: https://bit.ly/3oDPO2T

Offre de thèse : Role of gene regulation in the social control of queen behavioral specialization in ants, Mainz (Germany)

Registration deadline: 20 January 2022Application deadline: 27 January 2022The Libbrecht group at the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz (Germany) is offering a 3-year PhD position (DFG, fully funded with possibility of extension, 65% TVL E13) to study the role of gene regulation in the social control of queen behavioral specialization in ants. The PhD student will be supervised by Romain Libbrecht (JGU Mainz) in collaboration with Joe Colgan (JGU Mainz), René Ketting (IMB Mainz) and Franjo Weissing (University of Groningen), and will be integrated in the GenEvo research training program (https://www.genevo-rtg.de).Division of labor between specialized castes is central to the functioning and evolution of insect societies.Queens monopolize reproduction, while workers perform all the tasks necessary to maintain the colony. Queens are typically seen as egg production units, to the point where their function in insect societies has been compared to that of the germline in multicellular organisms. Some of our recent work has challenged this longstanding view by revealing unexpected flexibility in queens of the black garden ant Lasius niger. We have shown that the presence of workers inhibits brood care behavior in founding queens. Moreover, we found that removing workers from established colonies caused old queens to revert to expressing brood care. These results indicate that the presence of workers not only initiates, but also maintains the behavioral specialization of queens that can live up to 30 years. As a means to understand the molecular basis of queen behavioral specialization, we have also performed brain RNAseq to identify genes that differ in expression between queens with and without workers. In this project, we will ask the question: What are the gene regulatory mechanisms that regulate the gene expression changes underlying the social control of queen brood care behavior? The project will include empirical and theoretical components. The empirical investigations will involve the collection and experimental manipulations of ant colonies, extensive behavioral analyses, RNAi knockdown of candidate genes, molecular biology techniques, sequencing technologies (e.g., RNAseq, WGBS, ChIPseq) and associated bioinformatics analyses. The theoretical aspects will be developed in collaboration with Franjo Weissing, including via a research stay in his group at the University of Groningen.We are looking for a highly motivated student with a Master degree (or equivalent) in biology, good English skills, and a keen interest in evolutionary biology. Previous experience with social insects, molecular biology, statistics and bioinformatics is advantageous, but not required. The successful applicant will join an international, interactive, dynamic and English-speaking scientific environment in a brand new building with access to state-of-the-art, newly equipped laboratories and climate-controlled rooms. The JGU of Mainz hosts many excellent scientific institutions, and Mainz is a historic city located on the Rhine River with a large student population and a rich social and cultural life.Interested candidates should register to the IPP (https://ipp2.imb.de/registration) before 20 January 2022 and complete their application before 27 January 2022. Informal enquiries should be sent to Dr. Romain Libbrecht (romain.libbrecht@uni-mainz.de).The starting date for the position is 1 July 2022. The Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz is interested in increasing the number of women in science. Applications from women are therefore strongly encouraged. In addition, qualified candidates with disabilities will be preferred.Dr. Romain LibbrechtAssistant Professor / Junior Group LeaderInstitute of Organismic and Molecular EvolutionJohannes Gutenberg UniversityMainz, Germany+49 6131 3927852

EU-IUSSI 2020 – virtual symposium series in October and November 2021

We are glad to announce that EU-IUSSI 2020 will take place in the form of a virtual symposium series in October and November 2021, every Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12:00 to 15:00 (UK time).

We are welcoming applicants for talks. Please send your abstract (title, list of authors, affiliations, 200 words description max) by email directly to symposia organizers. The list of symposia and the contacts are available in the « program overview » page. Submission deadline is 15/07/2021.

eu-iussi2020.sciencesconf.org/registration

There are no registration fees. But please register in the « my registration » page (name, email, affiliations) to make sure you receive the zoom links (these will also be shared through IUSSI sections mailing lists).

We hope you will be many to join !

eu-iussi2020.sciencesconf.org

The Toulouse team,

and the European IUSSI sections.

Postdoctoral position in evolutionary genomics, University of Lausanne

Postdoctoral position in evolutionary genomics, University of Lausanne

A Postdoctoral position in evolutionary genomics is available in the group of Prof. Michel Chapuisat at the Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Lausanne, Switzerland. The group studies social evolution. We are currently investigating the origin, evolution and mode of action of a supergene controlling social organization in ants.  Our approach combines genomics, genetics, behavioral experiments and ecological surveys in the field. For more information, see http://www.unil.ch/dee/page7000.html.

Your responsibilities:
You will study the genomic evolution and mode of action of a supergene controlling social organization in ants of the genus Formica. The research project can be extended towards behavioral genetics, population genomics, ecological genomics or comparative genomics, depending on your interests and background. There will also be scope to accommodate personal ideas or projects.

Your qualifications:
We are seeking to recruit an early carrier post-doctoral researcher with a PhD degree in evolutionary biology, genomics, bioinformatics or related fields. The ideal candidate should have skills and experience in one or more of the following fields: behavioral studies, comparative genomics, population genomics, ecological genomics, molecular evolution, transcriptomics. The candidate should have a convincing publication track-record, excellent inter-personal skills and a strong ability to work in a team.

What the position offers you:
We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment, with opportunities for professional training. The Department of Ecology and Evolution in Lausanne University hosts research groups working on a broad range of topics, producing a rich intellectual and social life. Although French is the common language in Lausanne region, the department research activities and seminars are conducted in English. The University of Lausanne offers state-of-the-art facilities, including excellent computer facilities and molecular labs.

Contact for further information:
Prof. Michel Chapuisat: Michel.Chapuisat@unil.ch

Your application:
Deadline: 21.06.2021.
Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the position is filled.
To apply, please upload a single pdf document containing: a cover letter with a short description of your research interests, research experience, and why you are interested in joining our group; Your CV; The contact details of 2-3 referees; A copy of your PhD degree. Ideally, you should have received your PhD within the last 2 years or be about to obtain it in the next four months.

To receive full consideration, application documents should be uploaded online through the University of Lausanne recruitment platform.
Please apply through this webpage: https://bit.ly/3yY2apo

PhD postition in evolutionary biology, University of Lausanne

PhD position in social evolution, University of Lausanne

A Ph.D. position in evolutionary biology is available in the group of Prof. Michel Chapuisat at the Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Lausanne, Switzerland. We are currently investigating the origin, evolution and mode of action of a supergene controlling social organization in ants. Our approach combines genomics, genetics, behavioral experiments and ecological surveys in the field. For more information, see http://www.unil.ch/dee/page7000.html.

Your responsibilities:
Animal societies vary greatly in social organization, yet the causes of this diversity are poorly understood. Ants belonging to the genus Formica provide an ideal system to study the underpinnings of social organization, because a supergene – a large group of linked genes – determines whether colonies have one or multiple queens. The successful candidate will perform experiments to better understand the genomic, behavioral or ecological processes leading to this social polymorphism. The project will provide insights into how supergenes evolve and how they generate biological diversity.

Your qualifications:
In order to complete our team, we are looking for someone with a Master’s degree in biology, life sciences, genetics, bioinformatics, or related subjects. Applicants should have knowledge and skills pertaining to evolutionary biology, genetics, genomics, behavior or ecology. We are looking for a creative, curious and motivated person with excellent communication and interpersonal skills.

What the position offers you:
We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment, with opportunities for professional training. The Department of Ecology and Evolution in Lausanne University hosts research groups working on a broad range of topics, producing a rich intellectual and social life. Although French is the common language in Lausanne region, the department research activities and seminars are conducted in English. The University of Lausanne offers state-of-the-art facilities, including excellent computer facilities and molecular labs.

Contact for further information:
Prof. Michel Chapuisat : Michel.Chapuisat@unil.ch

Your application:
Deadline: 21.06.2021.
Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the position is filled.
To apply, please upload a single pdf document containing: a cover letter with a short description of your research interests, research experience, and why you are interested in joining our group; Your CV; The contact details of 2-3 referees; A copy of your Master degree; Your Master’s thesis summary.

To receive full consideration, application documents should be uploaded online through the University of Lausanne recruitment platform. 
Please apply through this webpage: https://bit.ly/3vH8OP5

Offre de stage de Licence : Effet du caractère envahissant des fourmis du complexe Tapinoma nigerrimum sur la myrmécofaune et identification des sources de propagation

Intitulé du stage : Impact de la fourmi Tapinoma darioi sur la myrmécofaune des espaces verts

Laboratoire d’accueil :
UMR CEFE, équipe Ecologie des systèmes Anthropisés. Université Paul-Valéry Montpellier
3, route de Mende, Montpellier

Encadrants :
1- Encadrante : Julia Centanni, Université Paul-Valéry, CEFE, jane.centanni@gmail.com
2- Co-responsable : Alan Vergnes, Université Paul-Valéry, CEFE

Description du stage :

Contexte :
Les activités humaines ont fait entrer le monde dans une période de changements globaux où
l’on observe un déclin majeur des espèces. Les invasions biologiques sont un des facteurs
responsables de ce déclin (Bertelsmeier et al., 2016). En raison de leur rôle majeur dans le
fonctionnement des écosystèmes, les impacts des fourmis envahissantes sont souvent très
importants.
Le complexe taxonomique Tapinoma nigerrimum est un ensemble d’espèces de fourmis
vivant dans les sols. Une des « espèces » du complexe ; Tapinoma nigerrimum occupe des
habitats naturels ouverts dans la région méditerranéenne et construit des nids faiblement
peuplés, les autres Tapinoma darioi et Tapinoma magnum prospèrent dans les zones
urbanisées du sud de l’Europe comme dans la ville de Montpellier et forment des
supercolonies au caractère envahissant (Seifert et al., 2017 ; Centanni et al., in prep).

Objectifs :
Dans le cadre de la thèse de Julia Centanni, l’objectif du stage est d’étudier les conséquences
de la présence des fourmis T. darioi sur le reste de la myrmécofaune (communautés de
fourmis) au sein des espaces verts et en particulier des parcs de Montpellier.

Hypothèse :
On s’attend à observer un effet négatif sur la richesse spécifique lorsque T. darioi est présente.

Méthodologie :
La majeure partie du travail consistera à poser des pièges barber dans les parcs et espaces
verts urbains envahis ou non envahis de Montpellier, puis de procéder au tri des fourmis
récoltées et participer à l’identification de la myrmécofaune.

Pré-requis :
Goût pour le terrain et l’entomologie, minutie et patience seront nécessaires pour le tri, une
connaissance sur les fourmis serait appréciée.
Personne ayant le permis et véhiculée serait appréciée mais non indispensable.

Références :
Bertelsmeier C., Blight O., Courchamp F. 2016. Invasions of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)
in light of global climate change. Myrmecological News, 22, 25–42.
Seifert B., D’Eustacchio D., Kaufmann B., Centorame M., Modica M. 2017. Four species
within the supercolonial ants of the Tapinoma nigerrimum complex revealed by integrative
taxonomy (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Myrmecological News 24, 123-144.

Gratification : Non
Divers :
Déplacements dans les espaces verts et parcs Montpelliérains

Conditions du stage :
Durée : inférieur à 2 mois, temps plein de préférence, non gratifié
Début : au printemps, à partir d’avril

Candidatures :
Merci d’envoyer un CV et une lettre de motivation à Julia Centanni,
jane.centanni@gmail.com

Ants as ecosystem engineers – Using ants to promote biodiversity, University of York (UK)

Deadline: 15 JANUARY 2020

Supervisors: Dr Elva Robinson, University of York, Dr Kelly Redeker, University of York, Carl Hawke, The National Trust.
Application Deadline: Friday, January 15, 2021

We are looking for an enthusiastic student to develop a PhD project using field experiments to quantify the relationship between meadow ants and management regimes, and how these together affect biodiversity and soil function. The ideal candidate will enjoy interacting with both academics and stakeholders and will want to apply their scientific training to an important applied question.

More information about the project available at: https://www.findaphd.com/phds/project/ants-as-ecosystem-engineers-using-ants-to-promote-biodiversity/?p124660

Funding Notes:
This project is part of the ACCE NERC Doctoral Training Programme in Ecology and Evolution. Appointed candidates will be fully-funded for 3.5 years. The funding includes:
Tax-free annual UKRI stipend (£15,285 for 2020/21)
UK tuition fees (£4,473 for 2021/22)
Research support and training charges (RSTC)

International candidates (including EU) will be considered however they will need to have adequate funds to meet the difference in tuition fees. International tuition fees for 2021 entry are £22,250.

IUSSI North-West European section winter meeting 2020 – Open for registration and abstract submission

Registration is now open for the winter meeting of the IUSSI with a deadline of the 15th of November for abstract submission.

The conference will take place over Zoom on 3 afternoons from the 16th to the 18th of December with keynote talks from:
Lotta Sundström (University of Helsinki, Finland)
Yusuf Abdullahi Ahmed (University of Pretoria, South Africa)
Inge Armbrecht (Universidad del Valle, Colombia)
Andreas Schramm (Aarhus Universitet, Denmark)
Sylvia Cremer (IST Austria)
Seirian Sumner (University College London, UK)

The cost of attendance is £15 (£7.50 for students) and the details and link to registration are here if you’re interested: http://www.iussi.org/NWEurope/winter2020.htm

Projet de maîtrise sur les fourmis du genre Leptothorax en forêt boréale mixte

Projet de maîtrise sur les fourmis du genre Leptothorax en forêt boréale mixte/
MSc opportunity on Leptothorax ants of the boreal mixedwoods.

Nous sommes à la recherche d’un(e) étudiant(e) pour un projet de maîtrise portant sur l’écologie des fourmis du genre Leptothorax en forêt boréale mixte.

Contexte et problématique
The present-day population biology of any given species is an outcome of the habitats that are available to it and the intrinsic and extrinsic factors that allow it to occupy those habitats. To understand a population of a species, we must understand how its habitats are generated and maintained, and how it colonizes and retains those habitats. These complex processes motivate efforts to identify and describe model ecosystems that possess enough complexity to exhibit general principles of population biology, but not so much complexity that they cannot be understood in detail.

As trees shed wood and decay, they produce nesting sites that ants can live in. Some ant species specialize on these sites, like coarse woody debris, and do not live in any other kind of habitat. Such sites provide an extrinsic limit to the size of an ant population, and are themselves an outcome of factors including the tree species composition, age, and past history of trees in a forest. The fraction of suitable nesting sites that are occupied by a given ant species is then an outcome of factors including the ability of ants to find and colonize new sites (dispersal), interactions with other species that exploit the same habitat (competition), and extrinsic mortality (predation).

In eastern Canada, Leptothoracine ants predominantly nest in coarse woody debris that is at a specific stage of decay (Lafleur et al. 2006). Within their particular debris type, this habitat is occupied by just two ant species: the small brown Leptothorax ergatogyneous, and the large black Leptothorax canadensis, and is not occupied by other free-living ants (Heinze 1993). L. ergatogyneous has a more restricted habitat range than L. canadensis, as it is additionally only found in habitats, such as roadsides and tree fall gaps, that possess an intermediate level of direct sunlight. Perhaps as a consequence of this specialization, L. ergatogyneous possesses an intraspecific genetic polymorphism between wingless queens (low dispersal; more prevalent in isolated habitat patches) and winged queens (high dispersal; more prevalent in continuous habitat) (Heinze & Buschinger 1989).

Finally, both L. ergatogyneous and L. canadensis are killed by a specialist parasite, the slave-making ant Harpagoxenus canadensis (Heinze et al. 1991; Stuart 2009). H. canadensis queens establish colonies by invading either L. canadensis or L. ergatogyneous colonies and killing the queen, and then maintain colonies by raiding worker pupae from neighboring L. canadensis and L. ergatogyneous colonies. Slave-making ants provide a particularly tractable model for predation in ants because, unlike other predators, they live within the colony they have killed. Thus, it is possible to estimate the extent of predation within a population by identifying a) the number of colonies occupied by H. canadensis queens, and b) the number of L. canadensis and L. ergatogyneous workers in those colonies.

Studies of Leptothoracine populations in eastern Canada therefore provide a) a manageably narrow and identifiable range of suitable habitat, b) competition for nesting sites between a specialist and a generalist species, c) discrete variation in dispersal capacity, and d) extrinsic mortality due to a specialized predator at a measurable rate.

A first step toward understanding this system would be to collect Leptothoracine ants in habitats that vary in ecologically-relevant conditions. These could differ in variables that contribute to habitat generation (tree species and demography, landscape features, recency of logging and burning), as well as habitat occupancy (habitat fragmentation, competition, and predation). Within a carefully-selected range habitats, the goal would be to perform standardized sampling of colonies to determine the number of colonies per species (L. ergatogyneous, L. canadensis, and H. canadensis), and score these colonies for the presence of winged versus wingless queens and the number and species of ants in the colony. Such a study would be scientifically valuable in its own right, and would motivate future research (ie, computational approaches like GIS and ecological niche modeling, and experimental methods like transplantation experiments).

Date de commencement : Septembre 2021.

Lieu : L’étudiant(e) sera basé(e) à l’Institut de recherche sur les forêts (IRF; http://www.uqat.ca/programmes/irf/), au campus de l’UQAT à Rouyn-Noranda. Néanmoins, ses travaux de terrain se dérouleront à la Forêt d’enseignement et de recherche du lac Duparquet (http://ferld.uqat.ca/), où il(elle) sera hébergé(e) durant cette période. L’étudiant(e) pourrait aussi être appelé effectuer quelques séjours à l’Université Harvard pour des travaux de laboratoire et des rencontres avec son co-superviseur. Par ailleurs, l’étudiant(e) sera membre de la Chaire en aménagement forestier durable (http://chaireafd.uqat.ca/) et du Centre d’étude de la forêt (http://www.cef-cfr.ca/). L’équipe de l’IRF est dynamique et offre un environnement de qualité aux étudiants, alors que la ville de Rouyn-Noranda est très active culturellement et offre une grande qualité de vie grâce à ses attraits touristiques (Festival du cinéma, Festival de musique émergeante, Festival des guitares du monde…) et activités de plein air (randonnée, camping, canot, ski, raquette…) (http://www.ville.rouyn-noranda.qc.ca/; http://tourismerouyn-noranda.ca/).

Financement : Bourse de 17 500$/année pour 2 ans.

Pour postuler : Faire parvenir par courriel votre curriculum vitae, une lettre de motivation, vos relevés de notes et le nom de deux références à l’attention de Benoit Lafleur (benoit.lafleur@uqat.ca) ou Buck Trible (bucktrible@g.harvard.edu).
Les personnes intéressées doivent faire parvenir leurs documents d’ici le 31 décembre 2020.

Benoit Lafleur, professeur
UQAT, Institut de recherche sur les forêts (http://www.cef-cfr.ca/index.php?n=Membres.BenoitLafleur)

Waring « Buck » Trible, chercheur
Harvard University

Ph.D. student and postdoc positions in evolutionary genomics of ants at the University of Haifa, Israel.

NSF-BSF funded positions for a Ph.D. student and a postdoc are available in the Privman lab at the Institute of Evolution, University of Haifa, Israel. The lab studies evolutionary genomics of social behavior in ants, employing tools from population genomics, genomic mapping, and phylogenomics. Ongoing research includes several projects combining population sampling, behavioral experiments, chemical analysis of pheromones, genomic sequencing, and computational analysis (see http://privman.haifa.ac.il/).
The new positions will be funded by an NSF-BSF grant for a collaboration with the group of Prof. Deborah Gordon at Stanford University. The project aims to unravel the genomic basis of social evolution, focusing on foraging behavior in variable climate conditions. The successful candidates will work in collaboration with teammates from both labs, to contribute to any or all stages of the research, including behavioral and genomic surveys, laboratory procedures and computational analyses. The research plan includes genomic sequencing of hundreds of samples, population genomic and genomic mapping analyses. The genomic work will be conducted in Haifa, using a liquid handling robot for both DNA extraction and genomic library construction. The analysis of the genomic sequencing data will also be conducted in Haifa, using our high-performance computer cluster. Therefore, candidates should have experience and/or motivation to learn genomics and bioinformatics. All the necessary protocols and knowhow for both molecular lab and bioinformatics procedures are already well established in the Privman lab.
The Institute of Evolution offers a supportive, dynamic, diverse, multicultural and multilingual working environment. The Institute hosts research groups working on a diverse, interdisciplinary spectrum of topics in ecology and evolution (see http://evolution.haifa.ac.il/). Students will have access to leading researchers with expertise in ecology and evolution, population genetics, phylogenetics and molecular evolution, as well as genomics and bioinformatics, including genomic mapping. Professional training opportunities in these fields are available in the Institute, the University of Haifa, and in other Israeli institutes, including advanced courses, workshops and conferences. Although the common language in Israel is Hebrew, there are many foreign researchers and students in the Institute and all activities are conducted in English, including seminars, advanced courses, workshops and conferences. The Institute offers state-of-the-art facilities and professional support for molecular biology research in general and genomics in particular, as well as a high-performance computer cluster for bioinformatic analysis.
Please send your application to Dr. Eyal Privman: eprivman@univ.haifa.ac.il
Informal inquiries are also welcome.
The application should include a cover letter with a short description of research experience, research interests, and why you are interested to join our lab, your CV, and the contact details of 2-3 referees.

Offre de thèse : IPHC-CNRS (STRASBOURG) and the Institut COCHIN – INSB (PARIS)

DEADLINE: 30 JUNE 2020 for applications. A shortlist of 5 applicants will be established shortly and interviews realized in the first 15 days of July.

 

Same Mitochondria, Different Longevities: What Do Ants Tell Us About Metabolic Ageing? a Project Coupling Evolutionary Biology to Cellular Bioenergetics

 

Key-words : Ageing ; Evolution ; Mitochondria ; Bioenergetics ; Ants ; Proteomics ; Molecular biology

 

Ants offer an exciting scientific opportunity for the study of ageing processes since these animals have evolved a striking variability of longevities both among species but also within a species among different castes. Shorter lifespan should be associated with a faster progression of age-linked profiles of physiological traits.

 

In accordance, ants have been used in previous studies to evaluate how the accumulation of damages with age, antioxidant capacities or telomere dynamics may explain ants’ longevity, producing mixed support for the Reactive Oxygen Species or Disposable Soma theories. For example, queens do not show longer telomeres (a determinant of cell lifespan and individual survival) than short-lived workers (females), but do so with short-lived males, suggesting that beyond telomere length, additional cell signalling pathways may be of key importance in queen longevity determination. Energy metabolism and metabolic rate are also considered as essential components of the ageing equation with impact on longevity, shortly stated as « live fast die young ». Mitochondrion is by far the main energy provider for animal cells and also controls redox homeostasis including reactive oxygen generation/disposal.

 

The question is therefore if/how the longer longevity of certain castes/individuals is associated with biochemical/molecular differences that could be considered as causatives: mitochondrial efficiency, antioxidant levels or telomere dynamics. Are they modified when a worker role changes, switching her ageing phenotype from a low to a fast rate? This raises the question of the influence of social context on individual senescence? One requisite is to access to ant’s bioenergetics both at the level of individuals and of mitochondria. Methodological issues will need to be addressed, our first experiments showed that respiration of ants is detected in the high-resolution respirometer (O2k Oroboros instruments). In contrast, classical extraction protocols used on vertebrate organs/cells did not yield preparation in which the biochemical activity ant’s mitochondria could be measured. New protocols will have to be invented. We know how to deal with limiting the amount of starting material: the extremely sensitive luciferase reaction (luminescence) is used to monitor ATP production rate and flow cytometry to evaluate membrane potential or ROS generation at the level of single mitochondria. To complete the picture of mitochondrial-derived associated ageing signalling pathways (e.g. Bax/Bak, CytC, caspases…) proteomic experiments will be settled.

 

In this context, we want to develop a new research project in the emerging field of socio-bioenergetics, which unifies the co-evolution of social organization with ageing processes using bioenergetics and molecular methodologies.

 

The present PhD project addresses the evolutionary mystery of the « ant same mitochondria but astonishing different longevities within a species », by merging two teams with complementary skills and knowledge. The Ecology, Physiology and Ethology department of the Institut Pluridisciplinaire Hubert Curien will bring its knowledge in evolutionary trade-offs bases and mechanisms of ageing and its presently running ants’ captive colonies. The Physiology and Evolutionary Physiology team (http://www.iphc.cnrs.fr/-Ethologie-et-Physiologie-Evolutive-EPE-.html) focuses on how animals cope with trade-offs (physiology and behavioural mechanisms) and what are the fitness consequences (Evolution). This will be completed by the state-to-the-art bioenergetics approaches of the team Mitochondria, Bioenergetic, Metabolism and Signalization of the Institut Cochin (https://www.institutcochin.fr/la-recherche/emd/equipe-bouillaud).

 

Expected skills:

The PhD candidate will be shared by the IPHC and the Cochin Institute, with a consequent work using mitochondrial bioenergetics protocols which needs a substantial background in laboratory work. Thus, we are seeking for a student with a large background in energetics/molecular biology, who will be trained with evolutionary biology questioning and interpretation of the results. He will be based during the first year at the Cochin Institute (Paris), working under the supervision of Dr F Bouillaud, doing mainly methodological set-up devoted to the measurement of ants’ mitochondria bioenergetics. The second and third years are planned to be in Strasbourg, but schedule may change in relation to the project advancement.

 

Acquired expertise:

The PhD candidate will become an expert in:

– Bioenergetics applied to insects

– Evolutionary biology of ants

– Evolutionary biology theories of ageing

– Mixed models’ statistics

– Methodological skills: mitochondrial respiration methodology, qPCR, introduction in proteomics, statistics, scientific writing, project management, communication skills.

 

Salary:

The project is funded by a CNRS- Interdisciplinary Mission grant of 17 keuros for functioning and a PhD allowance of ca. 1700 euros (before taxes) per month for three years (2020-2023), starting next October. The PhD contract will provide access to the French social security. Possibilities of teaching at the University of Strasbourg are open, with substantial income gain. The PhD will be hosted by the doctoral school of the University of Strasbourg (ED 414), and then will have to fulfil all the training obligatory for each PhD (54h in total), mostly provided by the University (French lessons, animal care training, animal ethics…). The IPHC and Cochin research teams are friendly and international and non-French speaking applicants are welcome.

 

Contacts:

François Criscuolo, IPHC-CNRS, francois.criscuolo@iphc.cnrs.fr, http://www.iphc.cnrs.fr/-Ethologie-et-Physiologie-Evolutive-EPE-.html

Frédéric Bouillaud, Institut Cochin INSB-CNRS, frederic.bouillaud@inserm.fr, https://www.institutcochin.fr/la-recherche/emd/equipe-bouillaud

Fabrice Bertile, IPHC-CNRS, fbertile@unistra.fr, http://www.iphc.cnrs.fr/-Spectrometrie-de-Masse-BioOrganique-LSMBO-.html

PhD position: IPHC-CNRS (Strasbourg) and the Institut Cochin – INSB (Paris)

PhD position open at the IPHC-CNRS (Strasbourg) and the Institut Cochin – INSB (Paris)

Deadline: 30 June 2020 for applications. A short list of 5 applicants will be established shortly and interviews realized in the first 15 days of July.

SAME MITOCHONDRIA, DIFFERENT LONGEVITIES: WHAT DO ANTS TELL US ABOUT METABOLIC AGEING? A PROJECT COUPLING EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY TO CELLULAR BIOENERGETICS
Key-words : Ageing ; Evolution ; Mitochondria ; Bioenergetics ; Ants ; Proteomics ; Molecular biology

Ants offer an exciting scientific opportunity for the study of ageing processes since these animals have evolved a striking variability of longevities both among species but also within a species among different castes. Shorter lifespan should be associated with a faster progression of age-linked profiles of physiological traits.
In accordance, ants have been used in previous studies to evaluate how the accumulation of damages with age, antioxidant capacities or telomere dynamics may explain ants’ longevity, producing mixed support for the Reactive Oxygen Species or Disposable Soma theories. For example, queens do not show longer telomeres (a determinant of cell lifespan and individual survival) than short-lived workers (females), but do so with short-lived males, suggesting that beyond telomere length, additional cell signalling pathways may be of key importance in queen longevity determination. Energy metabolism and metabolic rate are also considered as essential components of the ageing equation with impact on longevity, shortly stated as “live fast die young”. Mitochondrion is by far the main energy provider for animal cells and also controls redox homeostasis including reactive oxygen generation/disposal.
The question is therefore if/how the longer longevity of certain castes/individuals is associated with biochemical/molecular differences that could be considered as causatives: mitochondrial efficiency, antioxidant levels or telomere dynamics. Are they modified when a worker role changes, switching her ageing phenotype from a low to a fast rate? This raises the question of influence of social context on individual senescence? One requisite is to access to ant’s bioenergetics both at the level of individuals and of mitochondria. Methodological issues will need to be addressed, our first experiments showed that respiration of ants is detected in the high resolution respirometer (O2k Oroboros instruments). In contrast, classical extraction protocols used on vertebrate organs/cells did not yield preparation in which the biochemical activity ant’s mitochondria could be measured. New protocols will have to be invented. We know how to deal with limiting amount of starting material: the extremely sensitive luciferase reaction (luminescence) is used to monitor ATP production rate and flow cytometry to evaluate membrane potential or ROS generation at the level of single mitochondria. To complete the picture of mitochondrial-derived associated ageing signalling pathways (e.g. Bax/Bak, CytC, caspases…) proteomic experiments will be settled.
In this context, we want to develop a new research project in the emerging field of socio-bioenergetics, which unifies the co-evolution of social organization with ageing processes using bioenergetics and molecular methodologies.

The present PhD project addresses the evolutionary mystery of the “ant same mitochondria but astonishing different longevities within a species”, by merging two teams with complementary skills and knowledge. The Ecology, Physiology and Ethology department of the Institut Pluridisciplinaire Hubert Curien will bring its knowledge in evolutionary trade-offs bases and mechanisms of ageing and its presently running ants’ captive colonies. The Physiology and Evolutionary Physiology team (http://www.iphc.cnrs.fr/-Ethologie-et-Physiologie-Evolutive-EPE-.html) focuses on how animals cope with trade-offs (physiology and behavioural mechanisms) and what are the fitness consequences (Evolution). This will be completed by the state-to-the-art bioenergetics approaches of the team Mitochondria, Bioenergetic, Metabolism and Signalization of the Institut Cochin (https://www.institutcochin.fr/la-recherche/emd/equipe-bouillaud).
Expected skills: The PhD candidate will be shared by the IPHC and the Cochin Institute, with a consequent work using mitochondrial bioenergetics protocols which needs a substantial background in laboratory work. Thus, we are seeking for a student with a large background in energetics/molecular biology, who will be trained with evolutionary biology questioning and interpretation of the results. He will be based during the first year at the Cochin Institute (Paris), working under the supervision of
Dr F Bouillaud, doing mainly methodological set-up devoted to measurement of ants’ mitochondria bioenergetics. The second and third years are planned to be in Strasbourg, but schedule may change in relation to the project advancement.

Acquired expertise: The PhD candidate will become an expert in:
– Bioenergetics applied to insects
– Evolutionary biology of ants
– Evolutionary biology theories of ageing
– Mixed models’ statistics
– Methodological skills: mitochondrial respiration methodology, qPCR, introduction in proteomics, statistics, scientific writing, project management, communication skills.

Salary: The project is funded by a CNRS- Interdisciplinary Mission grant of 17 keuros for functioning and a PhD allowance of ca. 1700 euros (before taxes) per month for three years (2020-2023), starting next October. The PhD contract will provide access to the French social security. Possibilities of teaching at the University of Strasbourg are open, with substantial income gain. The PhD will be hosted by the doctoral school of the University of Strasbourg (ED 414), and then will have to fulfil all the training obligatory for each PhD (54h in total), mostly provided by the University (French lessons, animal care training, animal ethics…). The IPHC and Cochin research teams are friendly and international and non-French speaking applicants are welcome.

Contacts: François Criscuolo, IPHC-CNRS, francois.criscuolo@iphc.cnrs.fr, http://www.iphc.cnrs.fr/-Ethologie-et-Physiologie-Evolutive-EPE-.html
Frédéric Bouillaud, Institut Cochin INSB-CNRS, frederic.bouillaud@inserm.fr, https://www.institutcochin.fr/la-recherche/emd/equipe-bouillaud
Fabrice Bertile, IPHC-CNRS, fbertile@unistra.fr, http://www.iphc.cnrs.fr/-Spectrometrie-de-Masse-BioOrganique-LSMBO-.html

Offre de Post-doc : Evolutionary genomics, social supergene evolution – University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Postdoctoral position in evolutionary genomics, social supergene evolution, University of Lausanne
 
A Postdoctoral position in evolutionary genomics is available in the group of Prof. Michel Chapuisat at the Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Lausanne, Switzerland. The group studies social evolution. We are currently investigating the evolution and maintenance of a supergene controlling social organization in ants. Our approach combines genomics, genetics, behavioral experiments and ecological surveys in the field. For more information, see http://www.unil.ch/dee/page7000.html.
 
Your responsibilities:
You will study the genomic evolution of a supergene controlling social organization in Formica ants. You will contribute to analyze an existing data set, which includes chromosome-level genome assembly, re-sequencing data and RNA-seq data. The project will then be extended towards populations genomics, transcriptomics or comparative genomics, depending on your interests and background. There will also be scope to accommodate personal ideas or projects. 
 
Your qualifications:
We are seeking to recruit an early carrier post-doctoral researcher with a PhD degree in evolutionary biology, genomics, bioinformatics or related fields. The ideal candidate should have skills and experience in one or more of the following fields: comparative genomics, population genomics, molecular evolution, transcriptomics. The candidate should have a convincing publication track-record, excellent inter-personal skills and a strong ability to work in a team.
 
What the position offers you:
We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment, with
opportunities for professional training. The Department of Ecology and Evolution in Lausanne University hosts research groups working on a broad range of topics, producing a rich intellectual and social life. Although French is the common language in Lausanne region, the department research activities and seminars are conducted in English. The University of Lausanne offers state-of-the-art facilities, including excellent computer facilities and molecular labs.
 
Contact for further information:
Prof. Michel Chapuisat: Michel.Chapuisat@unil.ch
 
Your application:
Deadline: 24.02.2020.
Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the position is filled.
To apply, please upload a single pdf document containing: a cover letter with a short description of your research interests, research experience, and why you are interested in joining our group; Your CV; The contact details of 2-3 referees; A copy of your PhD degree. Ideally, you should have received your PhD within the last 3 years or be about to obtain it in the next six months.
 
To receive full consideration, application documents should be uploaded online through the University of Lausanne recruitment platform.
Please apply through this webpage: https://bit.ly/2Sid1Go

Offre de thèse : Evolutionary biology – University of Lausanne, Switzerland

A Ph.D. position in evolutionary biology is available in the group of Prof. Michel Chapuisat at the Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Lausanne, Switzerland. The group studies social evolution. We are currently investigating the evolution and maintenance of a supergene controlling social organization in ants. Our approach combines genomics, genetics, behavioral experiments and ecological surveys in the field. For more information, see http://www.unil.ch/dee/page7000.html.
 
Animal societies vary greatly in social organization, yet the genomic, behavioral and ecological processes causing this diversity are poorly understood. The Alpine silver ant Formica selysi provides an ideal system to study the evolution of alternative social organization, because a supergene – a large group of linked genes – determines whether the colony has one or multiple queens. The successful candidate will perform experiments to better understand the genomic, behavioral and/or ecological factors contributing to the maintenance of this social polymorphism.
 
Your qualifications:
In order to complete our team, we are looking for someone with a Master’s degree in biology, life sciences, genetics, bioinformatics, or related subjects. Applicants should have knowledge and skills pertaining to evolutionary biology, genetics, genomics, behavior or ecology. We are looking for a creative, curious and motivated person with excellent communication and interpersonal skills.
 
What the position offers you:
We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment, with opportunities for professional training. The Department of Ecology and Evolution in Lausanne University hosts research groups working on a broad range of topics, producing a rich intellectual and social life. Although French is the common language in Lausanne region, the department research activities and seminars are conducted in English. The University of Lausanne offers state-of-the-art facilities, including excellent computer facilities and molecular labs.
 
Contact for further information:
Prof. Michel Chapuisat : Michel.Chapuisat@unil.ch
 
Your application:
Deadline: 24.02.2020.
Incoming applications will continue to be considered until the position is filled.
To apply, please upload a single pdf document containing: a cover letter with a short description of your research interests, research experience, and why you are interested in joining our group; Your CV; The contact details of 2-3 referees; A copy of your Master degree; Your Master’s thesis summary.
 
To receive full consideration, application documents should be uploaded online through the University of Lausanne recruitment platform. 
Please apply through this webpage: https://bit.ly/31vIvgh

Offre de thèse : Transmission dynamics and disease defences in ants – University of Bristol

1 fully-funded PhD position to study transmission dynamics and disease defences in ants at the University of Bristol, UK

As part of an ERC-funded project (ERC Starting Grant), we are looking for a PhD student to investigate how ant colonies adjust different components of their disease defences (transmission-inhibiting social organisation, collective sanitary actions and personal immunity) in environment with high pathogen pressure. The project will involve a combination of controlled pathogen inoculations, behavioural experiments (automated tracking of individually marked ants), molecular work (physiological assays and immune gene expression analysis), and computational analyses of tracking data (social network analyses and simulations). The project will aim to elucidate whether ants use changes in spatial and social organisation as an active strategy to decrease epidemic risk.

Detailed information can be found in the attached PDF or at https://stroeymeyt-lab.ch/open-positions

If you are interested in joining the team, please send your application by email to nathalie.stroeymeyt@bristol.ac.uk

Your application should consist of a single merged pdf file including:
(i) a full CV and publication list;
(ii) a 1-2 page research statement describing your past research experience, current research interests, and why you are a suitable candidate for this project;
(iii) a short proposal (0.5-1 page) on how you would address the project’s goal;
(iv) the names and contact details of at least two referees;
(v) copies of (or links to) your publications and/or your Master’s thesis (if available).

Evaluation of candidates will begin on February 15th, 2020 and continue until the position is filled.

All enquiries may be sent to nathalie.stroeymeyt@bristol.ac.uk

Offre de thèse : Analyse des interactions dans les systèmes multi trophiques – Université Libre de Bruxelles

Offre de bourse de thèse (première année)

Titre : Analyse des interactions dans les systèmes multi trophiques : le cas des interactions entre la bactérie Serratia symbiotica, les pucerons hôtes et les fourmis.

Encadrants: Claire Detrain, service d’écologie sociale, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Bruxelles, Belgique, cdetrain@ulb.ac.be. Site web : http://use.ulb.be

En collaboration avec Thierry Hance, Laboratoire d’écologie des interactions et contrôle biologique, Earth and Life Institute, UCL, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgique Thierry.hance@uclouvain.be
Lieu et Période d’engagement :
Une année de bourse de thèse (12 mois) est disponible immédiatement mais sans garantie au-delà d’une année. La ou le candidat(e) sélectionnée s’engage à s’inscrire immédiatement en thèse à l’Université Libre de Bruxelles et à postuler ensuite pour l’obtention d’une bourse de prolongation de 3 ans auprès du FRS-FNRS.
Ce travail de recherche multidisciplinaire sera réalisé à titre principal au sein du service d’écologie sociale avec des séjours réguliers dans le laboratoire d’écologie des interactions.

Montant mensuel brut de la bourse : 2899 euros

Projet :
Certaines bactéries symbiotiques de pucerons peuvent modifier le phénotype de leurs hôtes en affectant leur fitness négativement mais aussi en leur apportant des propriétés nouvelles en cas de stress de l’environnement. Dans contexte, la bactérie Serratia symbiotica montre des degrés divers de relation symbiotique avec les pucerons. Certaines souches sont des symbiotes devenus obligatoires et intracellulaires, d’autres souches sont des symbiotes facultatifs avec différents tropismes cellulaires alors que d’autres enfin, se développent librement dans le tube digestif de leur hôte. Ces dernières souches sont particulièrement intéressantes dans la mesure où la colonisation de l’intestin des pucerons par les bactéries induit un coût de fitness pour l’hôte mais lui confère également une protection contre les parasitoïdes. Fait intéressant, les fourmis qui prennent soin des pucerons porteurs de la souche libre de S. symbiotica montrent également la présence de bactéries dans la première partie de leur intestin. Dans ce cas, plusieurs questions restent cependant inexplorées. Quels avantages ou coûts, les bactéries apportent-elles aux fourmis ? Comment les bactéries influencent-elles le système multitrophique des pucerons et des parasitoïdes ? Les fourmis contribuent-elles à disséminer les bactéries parmi les populations de pucerons ?
Pour répondre à ces questions, ce projet de thèse est divisé en trois tâches : 1) une étude de la cinétique de la colonisation du tube digestif des fourmis par les bactéries, notamment par les techniques de FISH, 2) une analyse de l’impact de la bactérie sur le comportement des fourmis et sur leur activité de soins aux pucerons, 3) une étude de la possibilité de transmission horizontale de la bactérie vers les fourmis via le miellat des pucerons et entre fourmis via la trophallaxie.

Diplôme et compétences requis
– Le candidat (H/F) sera détenteur du titre de master en biologie, bioingénieur, ou formation équivalente
– Expérience dans l’analyse et le traitement statistique de données, dans l’utilisation des logiciels R ou Matlab.
– Bonne connaissance de l’anglais écrit et oral
– Goût pour la mise en place d’élevage et l’élaboration de dispositifs expérimentaux.
– Des connaissances en microbiologie constituent un avantage.

Candidature
Par voie électronique avant le 15 FEVRIER 2020, soumettre un CV et une lettre de motivation à Claire Detrain (cdetrain@ulb.ac.be). Une copie de la candidature sera envoyée simultanément à Thierry Hance Thierry.hance@uclouvain.be

 

 

Offre de thèse : collective behaviour and social immunity at the University of Bristol (UK

A fully-funded PhD position is available in the Ant Lab headed by Dr Nathalie Stroeymeyt at the School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, UK, to investigate the strategies used by ants to decrease epidemic risk in environments with high pathogen pressure.

 

Background

Group living offers favourable conditions for the spread of infectious diseases, because high population densities and frequent social contacts facilitate pathogen transmission. To mitigate that risk, social animals have evolved a variety of defence mechanisms to prevent the entry and propagation of pathogens within the group, ranging from raised investment in personal immunity to highly coordinated collective sanitary actions conferring social immunity. Recent studies have shown that social groups can also adopt organisational features, such as the subdivision into well-separated subgroups, which reduce epidemic risk through transmission bottleneck effects. However, the importance of such organisational immunity features in disease risk management by real animal groups is still poorly understood. Research in our group adopts an empirical approach based on the experimental manipulations of garden ant colonies (Lasius niger) to (i) quantify the effect of social organisation on disease transmission and test key predictions from network epidemiology, and (ii) evaluate the relative of importance of personal immunity, collective sanitary actions and organisational features under different environmental conditions and at different stages of development (for more detail see https://stroeymeyt-lab.ch/research).

 

The project

The goal of this PhD project will be to understand how ant colonies adjust different components of their disease defences (personal immunity, collective sanitary actions and transmission-inhibiting social organisation) in response to repeated disease challenges. The project will involve a combination of controlled pathogen inoculations, behavioural experiments (automated tracking of individually marked ants), molecular work (physiological assays and immune gene expression analysis), and computational analyses of tracking data (social network analyses and simulations). The project will aim to elucidate whether ants use changes in spatial and social organisation as an active strategy to decrease epidemic risk.

 

Desired profile

We are looking for candidates with experience in quantitative behavioural analysis and programming and/or molecular biology techniques, and a willingness to apply a variety of approaches (behavioural tracking, writing own code to analyse the data, and lab work). A good working knowledge in statistics and experimental design is also desirable. Experience with social insects and insect immunity would be a plus. Candidates must be creative, motivated and passionate about science, have excellent oral and written communication skills, and be at ease working both independently and as part of a team.

 

The position

The position will be part of an overall project team consisting of two PhD students and two post-doctoral researchers and will be fully funded for 3.5 years by an ERC Starting Grant. The candidate will receive a maintenance stipend at the minimum UKRI rate and home (UK/EU) tuition fees will be covered by the grant.

 

Location

The School of Biological Sciences at the University of Bristol is a highly dynamic, international and interdisciplinary environment, spanning a wide range of research in Evolutionary Biology, Animal Behaviour and Sensory Ecology, Plant and Agricultural Sciences, and Ecology and Environmental Changes (http://www.bristol.ac.uk/biology/research/).

 

Expected starting date

May 1st 2020 (flexible)

 

How to apply

Please send your application by email to nathalie.stroeymeyt@bristol.ac.uk. Your application should consist of a single merged pdf file including:

(i)            a full CV and publication list;

(ii)           a 1-2 page research statement describing your past

research experience, current research interests, and why

you are a suitable candidate for this project;

(iii)          a short proposal (0.5-1 page) on how you would address

the project’s goal;

(iv)         the names and contact details of at least two referees;

(v)          copies of (or links to) your publications and/or your

Master’s thesis (if available).

Evaluation of candidates will begin on February 15th, 2020 and continue until the position is filled.

 

References

Stroeymeyt et al. (2014). Organisational immunity in social insects. Current Opinion in Insect Science 5, 1.

 

Stroeymeyt et al. (2018). Social network plasticity decreases disease transmission in a eusocial insect. Science 362, 941.

 

Nathalie Stroeymeyt <nathalie.stroeymeyt@bristol.ac.uk>

 

Offre de postdoc : Evolution and Genomics of Attine Ant Fungi, Copenhagen

Deadline: 10 January 2020

The Department of Biology in the Faculty of Science at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark is offering a Postdoctoral fellowship in fungal evolution and genomics, commencing 1 September 2020 or as soon as possible thereafter. The University of Copenhagen provides a top-notch research environment and the city of Copenhagen provides a vibrant cultural scene.

Scientific environment 
The fellowship will be part of a research project financed by an ERC Starting Grant based in the thriving research environment of the Section of Ecology and Evolution, and will involve some fieldwork in the Panamanian tropical rainforests at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (http://www.stri.si.edu/). The successful applicant will have experience and interest in evolution, genomics, bioinformatics, and fungus culturing methods.

Project Description 
The project will explore genomic signatures of crop domestication, focusing on a lineage of fungi that has been cultivated for food by attine ants for millions of years. These fungi have traits that reinforce their value as co-evolved food crops, and they depend on their ant farmers to provide them with nutritional substrates (e.g. fresh vegetation) foraged from the environment. The postdoc will take part in collection trips to Panamanian rainforests, perform integrative in vitro studies of fungus cultivar performance, and use genomics and bioinformatics tools to explore the metabolic pathways governing fungus crop performance.

Job description 
The position is available for a 2-year period and your key tasks as a Postdoctoral Fellow at SCIENCE are:

  • To manage and carry out your research project
  • To oversee student research related to your project
  • Write scientific articles
  • To travel to and perform field research in tropical rainforests
  • Disseminate your research

Formal Qualifications

  • PhD in Biology with good results (including publications and conference presentations)
  • An interest in fungal evolution, genomics and bioinformatics
  • Experience with sequencing and molecular analyses
  • Experience isolating and in vitro culturing of fungus
  • Creativity and ability to be both team-oriented and independent
  • A proven record of excellent English speaking, reading and writing skills.
  • Embrace of an international research environment and interdisciplinary research

Terms of employment  
The position is covered by the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff.

Terms of appointment and payment accord to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State.

The starting salary is currently at a minimum DKK 426.625 including annual supplement (+ pension up to DKK 72.952). Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.

Application Procedure 
The application, in English, must be submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

How to apply 
Applications must include:

  • Cover letter
  • Statement of research interests and reasons for applying to this position (max 2 pages)
  • Curriculum vitae (including a list of publications)
  • Copies of relevant diplomas and transcripts (PhD, Master and Bachelor)
  • Separate reprints of 3 particularly relevant papers
  • Full contact details (name, address, e-mail, telephone numbers and addresses of 2-3 professional referees).

In addition to the fulfilment of the above-mentioned qualifications, the main criterion for selection will be the research potential of the applicant, the match with the project and good interpersonal skills. Additionally, my research group and the University of Copenhagen strive to reflect the diversity of society and welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

The deadline for applications is 10 January 2020, 23:59 GMT +1.   

After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the Interview Committee. Afterwards, an assessment committee will be appointed to evaluate the selected applications. The applicants will be notified of the composition of the committee and the final selection of a successful candidate will be made by the Head of Department, based on the recommendations of the assessment committee and the interview committee.

The main criterion for selection will be the research potential of the applicant and the previously mentioned skills. You can read more about the recruitment process at http://employment.ku.dk/faculty/recruitment-process/

Questions 
For specific information about the Postdoctoral Fellowship please refer to the website of Assistant Professor Jonathan Shik (www.jonathanshik.com), or contact him at jonathan.shik@bio.ku.dk, Direct Phone: +45 31152140.

For further details, and to apply, see: https://employment.ku.dk/all-vacancies/?show=150980

Offre de thèse : PhD student: Social Immunity in Ants, IST Austria

Deadline: 8 January 2020

We are loooking for a highly motivated student to join our team working on the social immunity in ant colonies. The PhD thesis will be integrated in an ERC project to elucidate how ant colonies as a whole reach disease defence by the cooperative actions of its members. In particularly, we study the behavioural interaction of the individuals, their chemical communication and hygiene measures, as well as their individual immune responses.

For more details on our research activities, please see: https://socialimmunity.com

If you are interested, please send an email with your CV and motivation letter to Sylvia Cremer, IST Austria: sylvia.cremer@ist.ac.at

Please note that PhD students are accepted to the general IST Austria Graduate school and are affiliated to a research group after a training period (rotations in research groups and coursework). All applications hence need to be formally submitted to the IST Austria Graduate School with a deadline of January 8th, 2020.

For more information, please see: https://phd.pages.ist.ac.at

Soutenance d’HDR : Communication chez les insectes

HABILITATION À DIRIGER DES RECHERCHES
Discipline : Sciences de la Vie
Année universitaire : 2019/2020

Présenté et soutenu publiquement par Christophe Lucas
Le mercredi 18 décembre 2019, Salle des thèses, Bâtiment L, Parc de Grandmont à 14h

 

Communication chez les insectes : signaux, adaptation, spécialisation

Les organismes vivants ne sont pas isolés dans leurs environnements. Ils côtoient des semblables, des partenaires, des prédateurs et des compétiteurs dans un milieu où ils doivent s’orienter, s’organiser, se substanter pour survivre. Ainsi les êtres vivants interagissent tous les uns avec les autres et de ces interactions complexes émergent une force évolutive. Comprendre ces relations qui sont au centre de l’adaptation des espèces à leur environnement est une question centrale en biologie évolutive. Force majeure de l’évolution, cette adaptation dépend d’un système de communication qui permet aux individus d’obtenir des informations sur ce qui les entourent. Une relation dynamique d’échange de messages forme la nature même de la nécessité de communication, entre un émetteur et un receveur, entre une source et un récepteur. C’est sur cette base d’informations provenant de sources biotiques et abiotiques, que les individus modifient leurs comportements. Ainsi, un polymorphisme comportemental émerge, influençant par la même les autres organismes et les autres facteurs abiotiques avoisinants. L’individu lui-même émetteur de ce comportement va modifier sa physiologie, l’expression de ses gènes, voire sa morphologie. La double modification des facteurs externes et internes de l’individu définit la dynamique « environnement – gène – comportement ». Les systèmes de communication ont donc un rôle central dans les interactions écologiques (interactions individu–environnement), s’appuyant sur des signaux de communication émis dans l’environnement, ils agissent sur l’expression génique des individus et modifient leurs réponses comportementales.

Dans l’exposé qui suit, je résume mes travaux sur la communication chez les insectes à travers l’étude des signaux de communication, la formation de ces signaux, l’adaptation des espèces à leurs environnements en utilisant les différents signaux perçus et le fonctionnement du polymorphisme comportemental via des canaux de communication spécialisés. Le comportement est la résultante observable des systèmes de communication, il représente donc l’objet principal quantifiable de mes travaux, tout en y étant intimement lié. Ainsi à travers le prisme de mes travaux, nous allons découvrir comment un signal de communication est produit, centralisé puis circule entre les individus pour finir par modifier leurs comportements, leurs capacités d’adaptation face aux contraintes environnementales jusqu’à changer leurs propres devenir en modifiant l’expression de leurs gènes et leurs phénotypes.

Mots-clés : Communication, Comportement, Insectes, Expression génique, Polyéthisme, Polyphénisme, Socialité, Reproduction, Conflits, Adaptation, Ecologie chimique, Ecologie comportementale, Génétique comportementale.

 

Communication in insects: signals, adaptation, specialization

Live organisms are not isolated in their environments. They are in contact with siblings, partners, predators and competitors in a shared environment where, to survive, they must be able to orient themselves but also organize and feed themselves. Thus, they must interact with each other and from these complex interactions emerge an evolutionary force. Understanding these interactions, which are at the heart of species adaptation, is a key question in evolutionary biology. This adaptation is a driving force of species evolution, depending on a communication system which allows individuals to obtain information about their surrounding environments. Back-and-forth message sharing represents the main component of the communication between a transmitter and a receiver, between a source and a receptor. Based on information from biotic and abiotic sources, individuals modify their behaviors. Therefore, a behavioral polymorphism emerges, which involves modifications of other organisms and of the surrounding abiotic factors as well. The individual emitting this behavior, will modify its physiology, its gene expression and sometimes its morphology. The double modification of the individual’s internal and external factors defines the dynamic « environment – gene – behavior ». Communication systems thus play a central role in ecological interactions (individual-environment interactions). Based on communication signals emitted in the environment, they act on gene expression and modify the behavioral responses of individuals.

In the following discussion, I summarize my work on communication in insects through the study of communication signals, the formation of these signals, the adaptation of species to their environment using different perceived signals and the mechanisms of the behavioral polymorphism through specialized communication channels. The direct observable results from communication systems is behavior, therefore it represents the main focus of my studies. Through the prism of my own work, we will discover how a communication signal is produced, centralized and then how it circulates between individuals to eventually change their behaviors, their ability to adapt to environmental constraints and to finally end up changing their own future through the modification of their gene expression and their phenotype.

Keywords: Communication, Behavior, Insects, Gene expression, Polyethism, Polyphenism, Sociality, Reproduction, Conflicts, Adaptation, Chemical ecology, Behavioral ecology, Behavioral genetic.

Offre de Post-doc & Thèse – Several postdoc and PhD positions on bees and ants: US, UK, Germany, Denmark

POSTDOC: GLOBAL BIODIVERSITY OF ANTS, YALE
   
    https://bgc.yale.edu/opportunities
   
    A new, 2-3 year postdoc position is available in association with the Yale Center for Biodiversity and Global Change (BGC Center), the GEO BON Species Populations Working Group, Map of Life, and the Jetz Lab. The position is part of a larger, collaborative initiative to advance a conservation-relevant knowledgebase for focal taxa at a global scale, supported through the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation and associated sponsors, NASA and others. The postdoc will benefit from working closely with a growing group of Center-based biodiversity scientists, modelers, coordinators, and informaticians and from engaging with a global collaborative network of species group and methods experts worldwide. Support for project-related travel and workshops is available. Target start date for the position is spring through fall 2020.
   
    We are seeking an innovative thinker with a strong quantitative background who is interested in addressing ecological, conservation, biogeographic, or macroevolutionary questions for Ants as a global study system. Qualifications for the position include a PhD in ecology, conservation, macroevolution, bio-/geography, or biological informatics, combined with experience in spatial biodiversity analysis and inference. The preferred candidate will have a deep understanding of this species group, a passion for advancing its spatial knowledge base, a strong interest in the model-based integration of large, disparate biodiversity data, a dedication toward conscientious work in a team, attention to detail, and strong communication skills. Particularly welcome is an ability to traverse ecological, evolutionary, and conservation perspectives and to address processes at different spatial and temporal scales. We expect strong analysis and scientific writing skills. Experience in several scripting languages, database management, taxonomic name management, remote sensing, and/or biodiversity informatics are highly welcome.
   
    The position offers broad thematic flexibility, and focal research questions may be macroecological, conservation-focused, biogeographical, macroevolutionary, or comparative. We ask candidates to briefly describe their preferred thematic interest in the cover letter.
    We strongly encourage applications from women and minorities. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are core values in our group, and we believe that a diverse team will enable a broader perspective and enhance creativity.
   
    The Yale BGC Center connects biodiversity scientists from across campus and hosts a range of speaker and workshop events. It supports research and training around the use of new technologies and data flows for model-based inference and prediction of biodiversity distributions and changes at large spatial and taxonomic scales. Flagship Center projects include Map of Life and activities supporting the Half- Earth Map and the development of the GEO BON Species Population Essential Biodiversity Variables. Other initiatives associated with the Center include the integration of macroevolutionary and biogeographic inference (e.g., VertLife, ButterflyNet), NASA-supported remote sensing-informed layers and tools for biodiversity modelling (EarthEnv), the Max Planck-Yale Center on Biodiversity Movement and Global Change, and the Wildlife Insights initiative for camera trapping data.
   
    Yale University offers researchers and staff competitive salaries and a generous package of benefits. Yale has a thriving and growing community of young scholars in ecology, evolution and global change science in the EEB Department, the Yale Institute for Biospheric Studies, the Peabody Museum, and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. New Haven is renowned for its classic Ivy League setting, 75 miles northeast of New York City. To apply please send, in one pdf, a short motivation (i.e. cover) letter, CV and names and contact information for three referees to anna.schuerkmann@yale.edu, subject « BGC Postdoc – Ants ». Review of applications will begin on 9 December 2019 and continue until the position is filled.
   
    ———

POSTDOC: GLOBAL BIODIVERSITY OF BEES, YALE
   
    https://bgc.yale.edu/opportunities
   
    A new, 2-3 year postdoc position is available in association with the Yale Center for Biodiversity and Global Change (BGC Center), the GEO BON Species Populations Working Group, Map of Life, and the Jetz Lab. The position is part of a larger, collaborative initiative to advance a conservation-relevant knowledgebase for focal taxa at a global scale, supported through the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation and associated sponsors, NASA and others. The postdoc will benefit from working closely with a growing group of Center-based biodiversity scientists, modelers, coordinators, and informaticians and from engaging with a global collaborative network of species group and methods experts worldwide. Support for project-related travel and workshops is available. Target start date for the position is spring through fall 2020.
   
    We are seeking an innovative thinker with a strong quantitative background who is interested in addressing ecological, conservation, biogeographic, or macroevolutionary questions for Bees as a global study system. Qualifications for the position include a PhD in ecology, conservation, macroevolution, bio-/geography, or biological informatics, combined with experience in spatial biodiversity analysis and inference. The preferred candidate will have a deep understanding of this species group, a passion for advancing its spatial knowledge base, a strong interest in the model-based integration of large, disparate biodiversity data, a dedication toward conscientious work in a team, attention to detail, and strong communication skills. Particularly welcome is an ability to traverse ecological, evolutionary, and conservation perspectives and to address processes at different spatial and temporal scales. We expect strong analysis and scientific writing skills. Experience in several s cripting languages, database management, taxonomic name management, remote sensing, and/or biodiversity informatics are highly welcome.
   
    The position offers broad thematic flexibility, and focal research questions may be macroecological, conservation-focused, biogeographical, macroevolutionary, or comparative. We ask candidates to briefly describe their preferred thematic interest in the cover letter.
   
    We strongly encourage applications from women and minorities. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are core values in our group, and we believe that a diverse team will enable a broader perspective and enhance creativity.
   
    The Yale BGC Center connects biodiversity scientists from across campus and hosts a range of speaker and workshop events. It supports research and training around the use of new technologies and data flows for model-based inference and prediction of biodiversity distributions and changes at large spatial and taxonomic scales. Flagship Center projects include Map of Life and activities supporting the Half-Earth Map and the development of the GEO BON Species Population Essential Biodiversity Variables. Other initiatives associated with the Center include the integration of macroevolutionary and biogeographic inference (e.g., VertLife, ButterflyNet), NASA-supported remote sensing-informed layers and tools for biodiversity modelling (EarthEnv), the Max Planck-Yale Center on Biodiversity Movement and Global Change, and the Wildlife Insights initiative for camera trapping data.
   
    Yale University offers researchers and staff competitive salaries and a generous package of benefits. Yale has a thriving and growing community of young scholars in ecology, evolution and global change science in the EEB Department, the Yale Institute for Biospheric Studies, the Peabody Museum, and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. New Haven is renowned for its classic Ivy League setting, 75 miles northeast of New York City. To apply please send, in one pdf, a short motivation (i.e. cover) letter, CV and names and contact information for three referees to anna.schuerkmann@yale.edu, subject « BGC Postdoc – Bees ». Review of applications will begin on 9 December 2019 and continue until the position is filled.
   
    ———-
 POSTDOC IN BEE POPULATION GENETICS/GENOMICS, UNI HALLE, GERMANY
   
    A research scientist/assistant professor is sought for a ‘TV-L 13’ position (reference No. 5-14238/19-H) to join the Paxton lab at the University of Halle, Germany. Broad research themes of the group are host-parasite interactions, pollination ecology and social evolution: http://www.zoologie.uni-halle.de/allgemeine_zoologie/research/
   
    The group’s taxonomic focus is on insects, particularly bees. It draws heavily on molecular genetics, and research infrastructure is excellent. We seek a highly motivated individual with strong quantitative skills who can work independently to develop a research program in population genetics/genomics and contribute to teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate levels within general zoology. Note that German language skills are required for teaching, though the lab language is English.
   
    Halle is a delightful, historic city of a quarter million people with a large, research-intensive university situated 260 km southwest of Berlin and 40 km from Leipzig. You will be a member of a supportive and dynamic group that interacts closely within and outside the university, including with the DFG-funded biodiversity center iDIV: http://www.idiv-biodiversity.de/idiv-global/?lang=en which is a collaboration of the universities of Halle, Leipzig and Jena.
   
    Applicants must hold a university doctoral degree in biology/population genetics/genomics or a related discipline. Familiarity with insect ecological techniques and data analysis is preferable. Applicants should have a proven track record in publishing high quality scientific papers. Experience in writing grant applications and past success in attracting research funding is of advantage. Knowledge of German is essential for teaching, though the working language of the group is English,. The position is fixed term, initially for 3 years, commencing 1 February 2020 or as soon as possible thereafter, with the possibility of extension for a further 3 years. The salary is at the German standard postdoctoral rate (TV-L 13, 100%). The University of Halle is an equal opportunity employer.
   
    Further details of the position can be obtained from Robert Paxton (email below), to whom applications should be emailed as a single pdf file, to include (i) a letter of motivation, (ii) cv, (iii) list of publications, (iv) list of externally acquired funds, (v) a single page on research achievements and future plans, and (vi) contact details of three referees, by 20 December 2019. Interviews are scheduled for mid-January 2020.
   
    Prof. Robert Paxton
    General Zoology/Institute of Biology
    Uni. Halle, Hoher Weg 8
    D-06120 Halle/Saale
    Germany
    Tel.: +49-345-5526500
    Email: robert.paxton@zoologie.uni-halle.de
   
    ———-
 POSTDOC: COMPARATIVE GENOMICS OF 100 ANT SPECIES, COPENHAGEN
   
    A three-year postdoc position is available at the Department of Biology, University of Copenhagen.
   
    We are looking for a highly motivated researcher for a three-year postdoc position in comparative genomics. The position will be hosted in Villum Centre for Biodiversity Genomics (http://zhanggjlab.org) and will start from 1st May 2020. The deadline of the application is at 31st December 2019.
   
    Project description
    The Global Ant Genomics Consortium (http://antgenomics.dk/) aims to sequence high quality reference genomes for ca. 200 ant species covering the major diversity of Formicidae family. We expect to finish the first 100 genomes by 1st May 2020 and will start organizing the first pilot comparative genomics analyses. All the genomes have been assembled with PacBio long reads and HiC sequencing, thus will be in near chromosome level. This project will perform the comparative genomics analyses with the first 100 ant genomes to reconstruct ant phylogeny and to reveal the genomic changes associated with the evolution of ant social structure, behavior, and lineage-specialized adaptation.


   
    General job description
    * Independently carry out the comparative genomics analyses
    * Coordinate analyses together with other collaborators
    * Limited participation in teaching and dissemination activities of the Centre
   
    Required qualifications
    * A PhD degree within computational biology, ecology and evolution, genomics
    * or related fields
    * Highly experienced on comparative genomics and transcriptomics
    * A convincing publication track record
    * An active interest in insects or ant evolution
    * Fluent spoken and written English
    * Excellent communication skill and ability to work in teams
    * Have experience in working independently and coordinating with other teams
   
    For further employment details, and to apply, please visit: https://candidate.hr-manager.net/ApplicationInit.aspx/?cid=1307&departmentId=18965&ProjectId=150713


   
    Deadline for applications is 31 December 2019
   
    Inquiries about the position can be made to Professor Guojie Zhang; email guojie.zhang@bio.ku.dk.
   
    ———-
 2 PhD POSITIONS: SOCIAL INSECTS AND ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE, ABERDEEN
   
    Two PhD positions to work on social insects are available in the Lab of Functional Genomics & Sociobiology at the University of Aberdeen, under the supervision of Dr Fabio Manfredini.
   
    The first position deals with the « Origin and maintenance of plasticity in response to thermal stress in invasive and declining ants ». This is a 4 year PhD project, part of a competition funded by EASTBIO BBSRC DTP and in collaboration with Dr Lesley Lancaster (University of Aberdeen), Dr Jenni Stockan (The James Hutton Institute) and Dr Nathan Bailey (Univeristy of St Andrews). The deadline for application is Sunday, January 05, 2020.
   
    The second project instead will investigate « The cost of being a fussy eater – Oligolectic pollinators and environmental change ». This is a 3.5 years project, part of a competition funded by QUADRAT NERC DTP and in collaboration with Dr Lorraine Scott (Queen’s Univeristy Belfast). The deadline for application is Friday, January 24, 2020.
   
    You can find full details about the two projects and how to apply here: https://fmanfredini79.wixsite.com/manfredini/functional-genomics-sociobiology
    Or you can contact Dr Fabio Manfredini directly if you have any question: Email fmanfredini79@gmail.com, Twitter @fmanfredini79
   
    ———-
 GRADUATE POSITION:BEE GENOMICS, HULL
   
    Ecosystem stability and global food security depend upon healthy populations of bees, our foremost pollinators. Bees provide pollination services worth hundreds of billions of pounds annually. Honeybees and bumblebees are our most important managed pollinators, but the UK is home to ~245 species of wild solitary bees which collectively perform most pollination.
   
    Unfortunately, bee populations are declining, with multiple causes. Key to bee survival and fitness is nutrition; all bees feed offspring with pollen gathered from the landscape. But human influences such as agricultural intensification are altering nutritional landscapes for bees [3,4], and fundamentally affecting gene expression, growth and reproduction. Most of what we know about bee nutrition comes from studies in social bees like honeybees or bumblebees [5,6], where nutrition influences caste determination, development, pathogen resistance and others. However, the nutritional ecology of other bees, particularly solitary bees, is largely unstudied. Unless these bees can detect and respond to changes in nutritional landscapes, their fitness will be reduced « V a scenario we term a « nutritional trap ».
   
    Human activity is also changing climates and raising average temperatures. Temperature affects animals’ metabolic rate, physiology, digestion, and nutrient assimilation, as well as gene expression. Dr Gilbert’s recent work [7] has identified the need to store enough carbohydrate and fat to survive the winter as potentially critical for solitary bees’ nutritional ecology. But we know little about how this is regulated, how climate change will affect bees, and how bees will deal with changing nutritional landscapes in a future filled with uncertainty.
   
    We are now, for the first time, in a position to understand not just whether but also how different nutritional landscapes and climates affect bees. This exciting cross-institutional project combines field ecology with cutting edge molecular approaches to address a crucial knowledge gap about how bees are being affected by human-altered nutritional landscapes. This project addresses issues relevant for pure ecological science, conservation biology, agriculture and crop science. At Hull, Dr Gilbert »¦s lab has pioneered rearing protocols for the economically and ecologically important solitary bee, Osmia bicornis. This work is providing an unprecedented window onto bee nutritional ecology. At Leeds, Dr Duncan »¦s lab uses a variety of cutting-edge molecular tools to understand how bees are influenced by their environment. Dr Duncan has conducted groundbreaking work on how nutrition affects gene expression in developing bees, as well as recent work on the environmental and molecular control of reproduction in O. bicornis. The student will capitalise on this timely opportunity to synthesize the research interests of these two research groups and create collaborative links between institutions. The candidate will be integrated into both lab groups and will benefit from the infrastructure and connections at both universities.
   
    Differences in larval nutrition in the honeybee results in gene expression changes and ultimately adult bees with different reproductive potential and lifespan. Using careful manipulations within controlled laboratory environments, the student will first establish how dietary macronutrients affect the fitness of solitary bee larvae in response to changes in rearing temperature. Then, they will use high-throughput sequencing technology to examine genome-wide expression profiles of larvae receiving different diet and temperature treatments, to understand the molecular and physiological mechanisms underlying bees »¦ responses to landscape and climate change. Nutritional cues are known to alter gene expression [8], but to date studies have focussed largely on a few genes, and only in honeybees. The student will compare larvae receiving different treatments in (1) choices larvae make about which nutrients to consume, (2) correlates of fitness such as body size and overwinter survival, and (3) expression of growth- versus diapause-related genes. Outcomes: The findings will, firstly, shed light on the optimal nutrition for bees « V both currently, and in a warmer future. They will help inform active measures such as wildflower strips to conserve and promote these vital pollinators as the climate changes. Secondly, results will also show the physiological effects of different nutritional landscapes upon bees, now and in the future, allowing us a detailed understanding of the resilience of solitary bees to landscape change in a changing climate. Finally, the results will provide comparisons and contrasts with existing knowledge of social bee gene expression, physiology and nutrigenomics, providing unparalleled insights into bee nutritional ecology.
   
    References:
    1. Coley P, et al. Oecologia. 2002;133: 62″V69.
    2. Rothman JM, et al. Ecology. 2015;96: 873″V878.
    3. Naug D. Biol Conserv. 2009;142: 2369″V2372.
    4. Donkersley P, et al. Ecol Evol. 2014;4: 4195″V4206.
    5. Paoli PP, et al. Amino Acids. 2014;46: 1449″V1458.
    6. Helm BR, et al. Biol Open. 2017;6: 872″V880.
    7. Austin AJ, Gilbert JDJ. bioRxiv. 2018; https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/397802v1.abstract
    8. Di Pasquale G, et al. PLoS One. 2013;8: e72016.
   
    For details please contact Dr James Gilbert (james.gilbert@hull.ac.uk).
    To apply, and for more details:
    https://panorama-dtp.ac.uk/research/nutrigenomics-and-the-resilience-of-bees-in-a-changing-climate/
    Deadline: 6 Jan 2020
    Eligibility: UK and EU students only
    Funding: UK (NERC, Competition-funded)
   
    ———-
 2 PhD STUDENTSHIPS: THE ECOLOGY OF BEES ON A CHANGING PLANET, IMPERIAL COLLEGE LONDON
   
    1. CONTEXT DEPENDENCE OF DISEASE SPREAD AND VIRULENCE IN A POLLINATOR SYSTEM
    Supervisors: Peter Graystock, Sophie Evison & Richard Gill (secured funding)
    Deadline 13 January 2020
   
    In host-parasite coevolution, the Red Queen hypothesis states that the contest between host and parasite drives continuous adaptation to counter the ever-evolving opposition. Understanding this dynamic is made more complex when external forces intervene to change the environment, particularly anthropogenic activities and the rates at which they occur. The Melissococcus plutonius bacteria is known to be common in honey bees, often without influencing host health. However, unknown triggers can cause this bacteria to express a harmful and often deadly disease known as European foul brood (EFB). This globally distributed disease causes significant damage to the beekeeping industry, and in the UK, EFB is one of only two microbial bee diseases considered so harmful that positive detection requires immediate notification to the authorities. Yet despite the impact of this disease, we currently have little understanding as to what stressors influence the severity and spread of this disease, and if human practices such as land-use change or pesticide application could be influencing the delicate host-parasite interaction.
   
    The student will explore the mechanism behind transmission of the causal bacteria of the disease (Melissococcus plutonius), before determining if key stressors (Land and pesticide use) influence the severity of the disease. This directly-funded studentship will employ a suite of cutting-edge scientific techniques to address questions on what modulates the transmission and virulence of this disease. The project will add substantially to our understanding of the vulnerability of bees to this significantly destructive disease and the results will facilitate the formation of evidence-led disease management strategies. The student will gain a set of interdisciplinary skills including field work, next generation DNA sequencing and bioinformatics, pesticide residue analysis, microbiology and honeybee keeping. The student will gain training and collaboration from leading scientists including supervisor Dr Peter Graystock (Imperial College London), Dr Richard Gill (Imperial College London), and Dr Sophie Evison (University of Nottingham), plus assistance from the National Bee Unit/Defra.
    https://www.findaphd.com/phds/project/the-context-dependence-of-disease-spread-and-virulence-in-a-pollinator-system/?p114278


   
    2. ARCTICBUZZ: STUDYING POPULATION DYNAMICS TO UNDERSTAND THE EVOLUTION OF PLANT-POLLINATOR NETWORKS UNDER CLIMATE CHANGE
    Supervisors: Richard Gill, Jacob Johansson & Keith Larson (competitively funded)
    Deadline 6 January 2020
   
    To date our understanding of how insect pollinator declines are influenced by climate change remains limited. For instance, why have some species shown evidence of latitudinal range shifts in apparent response to climate change when others have not? To address this type of question requires us to understand the eco-evolutionary processes by which insect pollinator populations and their host plants are dynamically responding and how this translates to long term changes in the structure of plant-pollinator networks under climate change. Taking a population biology approach, this project will look to understand how bumblebee populations and host plant visitations have changed over the past 50 years for an Arctic bumblebee community in Lapland, Sweden. This will involve understanding how preceding climatic condition has affected population demography of each of 13 species of bumblebee. The study will reveal changes on population trait frequencies over space and time and how resource competition is determined through adaptations to temperature extremes to predict plant-pollinator network structure and the potential for species invasions. Looking at intra- and interannual population and community turnover of the bumblebees and their host plants we will look to inform predictive models under warming scenarios and identify early warning signs of climate change impacts. Furthermore, this project will reveal the spatio-temporal variation (non-static) in the bumblebee-plant visitation network to reveal how resistant and resilient the mutualistic interaction network is to climate change.
   
    The project takes advantage of a unique phenology transect established over a century ago allowing us to compare past data on bumblebee/plant community composition and phenology with contemporary data spanning the major warming over the last five decades. The transect runs along an altitudinal gradient on Mount Nuolja, Abisko, providing a thermal cline with the study taking a space-for-time substitution approach. The student will become experienced in using a number of interdisciplinary techniques, including a variety of fieldwork skills, bee and plant taxonomic identification, molecular methods in DNA barcoding and population genetics, studying bee thermal profiling, managing and analysing big data, skills in ecological network construction, statistics and developing mathematical models to understand extinction vulnerability. The project will involve a significant amount of fieldwork in the Arctic and will require the candidate to be relatively physically fit. This interdisciplinary project will also benefit from co-supervision & collaboration from a number of world-leading scientists, including: Jacob Johansson (Imperial College and Lund University, Sweden); Keith Larson (Umea University, Sweden); Jason Tylianakis (Canterbury University, NZ), Andrew MacDougal (University of Guelph, Canada); Emily Baird (Stockholm University (Sweden).
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Js8pH_9LCJz6pUCkrz97fpSquk73JmKs/view


   
    Where will the PhDs be based?
    The students will based at the Silwood Park campus of Imperial College and hosted by the Gill lab that is well equipped to study bee evolution and ecology. The student will be surrounded by world leading researchers in the disciplines of ecology, evolution and conservation. Facilities include >100 hectares of field site, new controlled environment rooms, microbiology facility, labs tailored for bee research and spacious workspace.
   
    How to apply
    Please send your CV, a one page cover letter explaining why you are suitable for the project, and the names and e-mail addresses of two referees to Dr Peter Graystock p.graystock@imperial.ac.uk by 13th January 2020 for honeybee EFB studentship or Dr Richard Gill r.gill@imperial.ac.uk by 6th January 2020 for ArcticBuzz studentship. Informal enquiries for either are welcomed.
   
    Student eligibility
    Honeybee EFB studentship has secured funding by the CB Dennis British Beekeepers Research Trust and Bee Diseases Insurance Ltd. Applicants should have, or be about to obtain, a Masters qualification and have a 2.1 or higher undergraduate degree in Biology, Ecology, Evolution, Microbiology or similar. Exceptional students at Bachelors level without a Masters will also be considered. Open to UK and EU citizens or applicants with Settled status in the UK. The project will start in September 2020.
   
    ArcticBuzz studentship is competitively funded by NERC. Applicants should have, or be about to obtain, a Masters qualification and have a 2.1 or higher undergraduate degree in Biology, Ecology, Evolution or similar. To be eligible for a full award they must have either British Citizenship, or Settled status in the UK, meaning they have no restrictions on how long they can stay, or been ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK for 3 years prior to the start of the studentship – (For non-EU citizens, this must not have been in full time education.). This does not apply to UK nationals.
   
    ———-
 PhD: HARD-WIRED FOR SUCCESS? UNRAVELLING GENOMIC SIGNATURES IN POLLINATORS, PLYMOUTH AND THE EARLHAM INSTITUTE, UK
   
    Key information:
    This project has been shortlisted for funding by the ARIES NERC Doctoral Training Partnership, and will involve attendance at mandatory training events throughout the course of the PhD. Successful candidates who meet UKRI’s eligibility criteria will be awarded a NERC studentship – UK and EU nationals who have been resident in the UK for 3 years are eligible for a full award. This studentship will start on 1st October 2020, and the closing date for applications is 12:00 on 7th January 2020. Shortlisted applicants will be interviewed on 18/19 February 2020.
   
    For further information, please contact Mairi Knight: mairi.knight@plymouth.ac.uk
   
    Background:
    Many pollinator species, recognised as essential for ecosystem function, are undergoing rapid declines. One recent exception is the ‘Tree Bumblebee’ Bombus hypnorum: expanding its range into and across the UK in <20 years, it is now one of our most common species.
   
    Building on previous work from the supervisory team, and in collaboration with the Earlham Institute, this project will investigate key genomic differences between this and other bumblebee (Bombus) species to substantially improve our understanding of the factors contributing to its success, along with the declines of others. The project’s focus is a genomic comparison of Bombus species from within the UK and continental Europe. Initial work has identified genomic regions of interest in B. hypnorum that may be indicative of its ability to adapt to anthropogenically altered landscapes. However, current data are preliminary and lack essential phylogenetic comparison.
   
    Methodology:
    This is a timely and exciting opportunity to generate a highly novel, and substantial, genomic dataset to test hypotheses as to whether the observed genomic differences are unique to B. hypnorum, or shared among Bombus species (some evidence suggests elevated resilience in the wider Pyrobombus sub-genus). In addition to fulfilling the specific aims, the data generated will offer the student significant scope to guide the project’s further direction through characterisation of genomic signatures and differences across this important pollinator group.
   
    Training
    The project will equip the successful student with state-of-the-art genomic techniques as well as bioinformatic and modelling skills that are highly transferable and increasingly essential across a wide range of academic and applied biological disciplines. The student will also gain important soft skills (e.g. communication, team working, problem solving). He/she will be based in Plymouth, spending short periods at the other Institutions as relevant.
   
    Person Specification
    The successful candidate will have a biology-based degree, an academic interest in evolutionary ecology, and be enthusiastic about pursuing a laboratory- and computer-based project. Ideally, he/she will have some basic molecular ecology experience (e.g. DNA extraction, PCR) and interest in genetic and evolutionary analysis. Experience of genome sequencing and bioinformatics is not essential as full training will be provided.
   
    Dr Mairi Knight
    mairi.knight@plymouth.ac.uk
    School of Biological and Marine Sciences
    University of Plymouth
    Plymouth
    PL4 8AA
    UK
   
    ———-
 PhD: ANTS AS ECOSYSTEM ENGINEERS, YORK
   
    PhD: Ants as ecosystem engineers: the interaction between niche construction and land management, University of York, UK
   
    We are looking for an enthusiastic and ambitious student to develop a novel project that will use applied field experiments to quantify the relationship between meadow ants and management regimes, and how these together
    affect biodiversity and soil function. The ideal candidate will enjoy interacting with academics and stakeholders from a range of backgrounds and want to apply their scientific training to an important applied question.
   
    Ants act as effective geoengineers, increasing habitat heterogeneity and constructing niches. Yellow meadow ants, Lasius flavus, were historically common on pastures. These ants promote biodiversity, for example they
    increase floral species richness because the ant mound soil differs from surrounding areas. Many modern farming practices reduce or eliminate their populations.
   
    Belton House, a National Trust property including 650 hectares of historic (Grade 1 Registered) wood pasture parkland, which is a UK priority habitat, has areas hosting an unusually high density of meadow ants, but also other areas where they are entirely absent. Previous management of the site has resulted in some areas suffering from over-grazing and soil compaction. The study site is undergoing a period of management change, to a more biodiversity-friendly approach of mixed and lighter grazing. Despite the known importance of ants within the soil ecosystems, very little is known about how the ecosystem impacts of meadow ants are mediated, and how these impacts interact with past and present pasture management practices. The collaboration with CASE partner The National Trust provides the opportunity to carry out controlled experiments, altering management to assess impact on ant populations, and altering ant populations to assess impact on ecosystem composition and function.
   
    This project will be supervised by Elva Robinson (ant behavioural ecologist, University of York), Kelly Redeker (soil biogeochemist, University of York) and Carl Hawke (Nature Conservation Advisor, The National Trust). This is a NERC ACCE DTP studentship. Eligibility: UK/EU applicants only.
   
    Closing date for applications: 8 January 2020
   
    More information:
    https://www.york.ac.uk/biology/postgraduate/research/funding/funded-studentships/


    https://www.york.ac.uk/biology/postgraduate/nercdtp 
    Contact: elva.robinson@york.ac.uk
   
    ———-
 GRADUATE OPPORTUNITIES IN ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY, HOUSTON
   
    The Department of Biology and Biochemistry at the University of Houston (UH) welcomes applications for its graduate program in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology for Fall 2020.  The following faculty in the areas of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology have opportunities available for their labs:
   
    Alex Stewart (astewar6@central.uh.edu): Mathematical biology
    Blaine Cole (bcole@uh.edu): Evolution and social behavior
    Dan Graur (dgraur@uh.edu): Molecular evolutionary bioinformatics
    Diane Wiernasz (dwiernasz@uh.edu): Sexual selection
    Erin Kelleher (eskelleher@uh.edu): Evolutionary genetics and genomics
    Kerri Crawford (kmcrawford3@uh.edu): Community ecology
    Rebecca Zufall (rzufall@uh.edu): Evolutionary genetics
    Ricardo Azevedo (razevedo@uh.edu): Evolutionary genetics
    Rich Meisel (rpmeisel@uh.edu): Evolutionary genetics and genomics
    Steve Pennings (spennings@uh.edu): Community ecology
    Tony Frankino (frankino@uh.edu): Evolution of complex traits
   
    If you are interested, you should look at the relevant faculty members’ web sites and then contact them directly for more information:
    http://www.uh.edu/nsm/biology-biochemistry/people/faculty/faculty-alpha/


   
    For more information regarding the Evolutionary Biology and Ecology graduate program at UH see:
    http://www.bchs.uh.edu/graduate/prospective-students/


    http://www.uh.edu/graduate-school/prospective-students/how-to-apply/


   
    If you have any questions regarding the application process, please contact: Ms. Rosezelia Jackson (biograd@central.uh.edu)
   
    The early deadline for application of prospective students is February 1st, 2020.  Evaluation will continue after that date, but students are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

Offre de thèse : Origin and maintenance of plasticity in response to thermal stress in invasive and declining ants

PhD position to work on social insects is available in the Lab of Functional Genomics & Sociobiology at the University of Aberdeen, under the supervision of Dr Fabio Manfredini.

« Origin and maintenance of plasticity in response to thermal stress in invasive and declining ants ».

This is a 4 year PhD project, part of a competition funded byEASTBIO BBSRC DTPand in collaboration withDr Lesley Lancaster(University of Aberdeen),Dr JenniStockan(The James Hutton Institute) andDr Nathan Bailey(Univeristy of St Andrews). The deadline for application is Sunday, January 05, 2020.

You can find full details and how to apply here:

https://fmanfredini79.wixsite.com/manfredini/functional-genomics-sociobiology

Or you can contact Dr Fabio Manfredini directly if you have any question:

Email fmanfredini79@gmail.com, Twitter@fmanfredini79

 

 

Fabio Manfredini (BSc; MSc, PhD)

 

Postdoctoral Research Associate

School of Biological Sciences

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Royal Holloway, University of London

Egham, TW20 0EX

 

Cell.: +44 07852416104

e-Mail: fabio.manfredini@rhul.ac.uk

Skype: fabio.manfredini2

Webpage: www.fmanfredini79.wixsite.com/manfredini

 

Fabio Manfredini <fmanfredini79@gmail.com>

Offre de stage : Ant gene evolution

GRADUATE POSITION: ANT GENE EVOLUTION, FLORIDA

 

Interested in Genetic and Epigenetic Basis of Social Evolution? Apply for Graduate School at the University of Florida (UF)

The Yan Lab in the UF Biology is seeking graduate researchers to study how evolutionary expansion of receptor genes and diversity of sensory neurons in ants regulate their social communication and interaction with ecological environment, as well as how behavioral plasticity and reproductive longevity were evolved in eusocial insects.

Information on Dr. Yans research and articles can be found: https://biology.ufl.edu/hua-yan/ www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28802043(Odorant Receptor) www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25200663(Behavioral Epigenetics)

 

Interested students are strongly recommended to apply for the graduate school at the University of Florida for Fall 2020. The deadline for applications to UF Biology is December 1. If you are interested, please contact me via email: hua.yan@ufl.edu

 

More information can be found at the website: https://biology.ufl.edu/graduate/application/

 

The University of Florida is an Equal Opportunity Institution. Individuals from under-represented groups in STEM are particularly encouraged to apply.

 

Hua Yan, Ph.D.

Department of Biology,University of Florida

882 Newell Dr., 511 Carr Hall

PO Box 118525

Gainesville, FL 32611

Phone:352-273-4983

Offre de stage : Effet du caractère envahissant des fourmis du complexe Tapinoma nigerrimum sur la myrmécofaune

Stage M1

Contexte :
Les activités humaines ont fait entrer le monde dans une période de changements globaux où l’on observe un déclin majeur des espèces. Les invasions biologiques sont un des facteurs responsables de ce déclin (Bertelsmeier et al., 2016). En raison de leur rôle majeur dans le fonctionnement des écosystèmes, les impacts des fourmis envahissantes sont majeurs.
Le complexe taxonomique Tapinoma nigerrimum est un ensemble d’espèces de fourmis vivant dans les sols. Si une des « espèces » du complexe ; T. nigerrimum occupe des habitats naturels ouverts dans la région méditerranéenne et construit des nids faiblement peuplés, les autres (T. darioi et T. magnum) prospèrent dans différentes villes d’Europe (Seifert et al., 2017) et particulièrement dans la Métropole de Montpellier où leur présence a été confirmée dans un grand nombre d’espaces verts. Des travaux préliminaires menés sur ses espaces verts indiquent un effet de la présence des formes envahissantes sur le reste de la myrmecofaune (autres espèces de fourmis). L’effet de la gestion des espaces verts mériteraient d’être approfondi ainsi que les mécanismes responsables de la propagation. Des travaux menés à Lyon ont identifié le transport de plantes comme principale source de propagation.

Objectifs :
Les objectifs du stage sont (1) de mieux comprendre les conséquences de l’invasion par T. darioi et T. magnum sur le reste de la myrmécofaune et notamment l’interaction avec la gestion des espaces verts ; (2) d’identifier les sources de propagation.

Hypothèse :
Les conséquences sur la myrmécofaune seraient amplifiées par certaines pratiques de gestion comme l’irrigation. Les jardineries et les pépinières seraient la principale source de propagation.

Méthodologie :
La majeure partie du travail consistera à échantillonner et à identifier la myrmecofaune dans des parcs envahis ou non envahis ainsi que dans des pépinières et des jardineries.

Références :
Bertelsmeier, C., Blight, O., and Courchamp, F. (2016). Invasions of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in light of global climate change. Myrmecol. News, 22, 25–42. Retrieved from http://max2.ese.u- psud.fr/epc/conservation/PDFs/FutureAnts.pdf
Seifert, B., D’Eustacchio, D., Kaufmann, B., Centorame, M., and Modica, M. (2017). Four species within the supercolonial ants of the Tapinoma nigerrimum complex revealed by integrative taxonomy (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Myrmecological News 24:123-144.

Condition du stage de M1 : Début avril 2020

Candidatures : Merci d’envoyer un CV et une lettre de motivation à Julia Centanni,
julia-jane.centanni@univ-montp3.fr

 

 

 

https://www.sfecologie.org/offre/effet-du-caractere-envahissant-des-fourmis-du-complexe-tapinoma-nigerrimum-sur-la-myrmecofaune-et-identification-des-sources-de-propagation/

Offre de thèse : NSF-supported graduate studies in evolutionary epigenetics and genomics of social insects at the University of Georgia.

PhD Position: NSF-supported graduate studies in evolutionary epigenetics and genomics of social insects at the University of Georgia.

 

The Hunt Lab at UGA is broadly interested in how evolution produces variation in insect form and function. We use social insects, such as ants, bees, and wasps as models for studying how evolutionary and gene regulatory mechanisms shape variation in social behavior. We have taken a particular interest in investigating genetic and epigenetic factors that underlie differences in complex traits.

In collaboration with Ken Ross at UGA, we study how a supergene and phenotypic plasticity influence variation in colony queen number and social behaviors in the fire ant Solenopsis invicta. In collaboration with Sarah Kocher at Princeton University, we study how gene regulatory evolution shapes social behaviors. We are always interested in identifying new systems and approaches for study.

The Hunt Lab is a young and dynamic research group dedicated to fostering the success of its lab members. We are a part of the Entomology Department, one of many departments in the life sciences at the University of Georgia. Diverse areas of expertise and coursework availability at UGA, along with a first-rate genomics core facility, help students reach their full potential. Students will take coursework and receive training in entomology, genetics, and bioinformatics.

 

Requirements: An interest in broad evolutionary questions and a desire to develop bioinformatic expertise.  Applicants must meet requirements of admission to the Graduate School at the University of Georgia (see http://www.caes.uga.edu/departments/entomology/graduate.html).

The start date is flexible.

More information about the Hunt Lab can be found online at http://huntlab.uga.edu.  Prospective applicants should email Brendan Hunt at huntbg@uga.edu with a statement of interest.

BRENDAN HUNT <huntbg@uga.edu>