Title: Circadian light entrainment in Nasonia
Host Institution: University of Groningen
Supervisor: Dr Roelof Hut
Secondment: University of Haifa for 4 months for bioinformatics and population genetic analysis.
Objectives: To investigate how the Nasonia circadian clock entrains to light cycles and whether adaptive changes to this underlying entrainment mechanism have generated the latitudinal clines we observe in circadian light sensitivity in Europe and America. Using genome screens for photic induction allied to mutagenesis, and populations of Nasonia collected at different latitudes and continents, we will identify photosensitive transcripts that have undergone adaptive changes along latitudinal clines.
About me: I come from Xi’an, a historical city in the middle of China and where the Terracotta Warriors were found. I have always had a passion for biology and wanted to be a researcher. To pursue my passion in biology and to study in an internationally recognised university, I have moved to UK and finished my undergraduate and master degree at Lancaster University over the last few years. During my undergraduate degree, I became interested in neuroscience and brain functions. To gain more research experience after graduation, I started an Msc by research project on the role of insulin/IGF-like signalling in the ageing and function of the Drosophila brain. I have gained experiences in taking care of flies, behavioural analyses, and molecular experiments.
I could not be happier to have the opportunity to be part of the CINCHRON consortium for my PhD study and see my dreams finally happening. My project will investigate the underlying mechanisms of the circadian light pathway in Nasonia and the association with latitudinal clines in circadian light sensitivity. I am very excited to move to a new country, develop amazing skills, and work with international group of researchers.
Apart from my interest in science, I have a great passion for dancing that I have been training for pole dance, aerial dance, and belly dance. I enjoy intensive training and see myself progress every day. I also like to spend my free time travelling, volunteering, and teaching.