Title: Ultradian, circadian and seasonal clocks in Nasonia
Host Institution: University of Groningen
Supervisor: Prof Leo Beukeboom and Dr Louis Van de Zande
Contact: P.M.M.Romeyer at rug.nl
Start date: 1 September 2018
Secondment: University of Haifa for 4 months to analyse the population data and haplotypes and 1 month to University of Jerusalem to compare Nasonia with bumblebee biology, another hymenopteran.
Objectives: To investigate the expression and allelic variation of clock genes that govern ultradian, circadian, and annual rhythmicity of physiological traits in Nasonia. Clock gene expression in the brain will be analysed at different timepoints throughout the year from natural isolates and annual changes in clock gene haplotype frequencies will be recorded in natural populations. CRISPR/Cas9 mutagenesis of clock genes will reveal their effects on circadian, annual (seasonal) and ultradian (courtship) phenotypes.
About me: I am from Toulouse (France) and I graduated from the Ecole d’Ingénieur de Purpan. I specialized in sustainable agriculture and more precisely in biocontrol of pests. I am expecting from my Ph.D at the University of Groningen (The Netherlands) to increase my knowledge on Nasonia spp. clock genes coding for seasonal, circadian and ultradian cycles. This micro-wasp is a genetic model for other parasitoïds as Trichogramma spp. which are major bioncontrol agents. I had the opportunity to work on Trichogramma brassicae for 6 months with Bioline Agrosciences research team.
Thanks to these 3 years of Ph.D I expect to become a specialist on parasitoïds development. I believe this knowledge will help improve and adapt sustainable pest control strategies to all our growing areas on earth but also regarding the incoming climate changes and society expectations.