Title: Seasonal light signalling in Nasonia
Host Institution: University of Haifa
Supervisor: Prof Eran Tauber
Start date: 14 October 2018
Secondment: Groningen (3 months) for CRISPR/Cas9 and Wuerzburg (3 months) for neuroanatomy studies.
Objectives: To identify the dedicated photoreceptors for seasonality in Nasonia, where are they expressed, and to identify natural variants for these photoreceptors. Four candidate opsins have been uncovered in the Nasonia genome, and their expression patterns, temporally and spatially will be studied in the brain followed by CRISPR/Cas9 mutagenesis to examine their effects on diapause. A second approach will be to use natural strains with differing photoperiodic sensitivities and using GWAS (genome wide association study) to map any gene(s) responsible.
About me: I was born and raised in Vienna, Austria, where I also acquired my Degree in Molecular Biotechnology. I love to explore life and experience all its facets – besides natural sciences, I am very passionate about arts, travel and philosophy. My desire of exploration soon turned into opportunity and allowed me to work in research institutes in Austria, Belgium and Denmark on a broad range of subjects including Molecular Biology, Medical Chemistry and Neurobiology.
Throughout my studies, however, I developed another Passion: not only researching science, but also communicating it and, by doing so, educating others. For the last three years, have been in charge of several projects at the interface between research and education, and providing students with the necessary means to create and realise their own scientific projects.
Nonetheless, I knew that after some time I would like to return to the forefront of scientific discovery and aspire to work on my PhD thesis. Chronobiology has always been a favourite subject of mine and I am also excited about the idea of mobility and exchange which appears inherent to the CINCHRON network. Therefore, my curiosity was triggered as soon as I stumbled over the project and I am very grateful for being part of this research network and taking care of elucidating the relevant factors for seasonality in the jewel wasp Nasonia.