Adaptive genetic variation in mustelid species

Closely related species differ in the number genes contained in their genomes. We study this type of genomic variation in the context of habitat adaptation in mustelids.

Project details
Duration: 03/2017 - 07/2020
Third-party funded: no
Involved Department(s): Dept Evolutionary Genetics
Leibniz-IZW Project Leader(s): Daniel Förster, Jörns Fickel (all: Dept Evolutionary Genetics)
Leibniz-IZW Project Team: Lorena Derežanin (Dept Evolutionary Genetics)
Consortium Partner(s): Museum für Naturkunde – Leibniz Institute for Evolution and Biodiversity Science (MfN), Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (USA), Institute of Molecular and Cellular Biology Novosibirsk (Russia), Theodosius Dobzhansky Center for Genome Bioinformatics (Russia)
Current Funding Organisation: -
Research Foci: Understanding traits and evolutionary adaptations
We focus on the evolution of gene families in the genomes of mustelid species with an emphasis on the highly variable immune gene families. Our aim is to estimate the number of gained/lost gene copies with regard to phylogenetic relationships of the species and to identify the effect of ecological niche and habitat on copy number variation in specific gene families. To investigate this, we generate de novo genome assemblies for mustelids with 10x Genomics “Linked-Reads” sequencing technology. These genomes will be used in comparative genomic analysis and detection of signals of positive selection, indicative of adaptive variation.

Selected Publications

Derežanin L, Blažytė A, Dobrynin P, Duchêne DA, Grau JH, Jeon S, Kliver S, Koepfli KP, Meneghini D, Preick M, Tomarovsky A, Totikov A, Fickel J, Förster DW (2022). Multiple types of genomic variation contribute to adaptive traits in the mustelid subfamily Guloninae. MOL ECOL. Doi:10.1111/mec.16443

Totikov A, Tomarovsky A, Prokopov D, Yakupova A, Bulyonkova T, Derežanin L, Rasskazov D, Wolfsberger WW, Koepfli K-P, Oleksyk TK, Kliver S (2021): Chromosome-Level Genome Assemblies Expand Capabilities of Genomics for Conservation Biology. GENES 12, 1336. doi:10.3390/genes12091336

Totikov A, Tomarovsky A, Derežanin L, Dudchenko O, Lieberman-Aiden E, Koepfli K, Kliver S (2021): Chromosome-Level Genome Assemblies: Expanded Capabilities for Conservation Biology Research. Proceedings 76, 10. doi:10.3390/IECGE-07149

Derežanin L, Fickel J, Förster DW (2020): The complete mitochondrial genome of the meerkat (Suricata suricatta) and its phylogenetic relationship with other feliform species. MITOCHOND DNA Part B 5, 1100-1101. doi:10.1080/23802359.2020.1726221.