Paris, France: Postdoc in phylogeny and macroevolution of venomous organisms Tisk
Speciation and diversification in venomous organisms are often associated
with prey and toxin diversification. In the conoideans, a group of
marine gastropods predators of worms, molluscs and fish, studied since
40 years for the potential therapeutic applications of the toxins they
produce, it is generally accepted that the apparition of the venom
apparatus explain the high species diversity in this group.
the number of species and the distribution area varies among lineages,
and the apparition of the venom apparatus in itself cannot explain
these differences. Recent studies showed that the structure of the venom
apparatus, including the morphology of the radula and the presence of
accessory anatomical structures, together with the toxin composition
of the venom, can also vary among lineages. The goal of the project
is thus to (i) estimate the rates of diversification in the Conoidea
to eventually detect variations in time and among lineages, and (ii)
correlate these variations with various characters linked to the venom
apparatus (morpho-anatomy, toxin composition).
This project is part of the ANR program CONOTAX (ANR-13-JSV7-0013-01)
whose objective is to understand the process of diversification in
the Conoidea, both at the phylogenetic and species level, combining
the analysis of the species diversity, the prey diversity and the
toxin diversity. More info can be found on the CONOTAX website
The post-doc will be in charge of the constitution of the dataset and
the analyses: phylogenetic reconstruction, datation and estimation of
diversification rates and correlation with character evolution. The
first step of the work will thus be to complete the available molecular
phylogeny of the groups. All the known families are represented in
the collections of the MNHN (National Museum of Natural History),
but expeditions on the field are already planned for 2015, at which
the post-doc could participate. The methodology used until now (Sanger
sequencing of traditional genes for gastropods COI, 12S, 16S, 28S,
H3, 18S) does not resolve the deeper nodes, and the postdoc will thus
have to set up a new methodology for the group using Next-Generation
Sequencing (NGS). Three approaches will be explored: sequencing of
complete mitochondrial genomes, sequencing of transcriptomes, and
exon-capture. Available fossils for the group will then be used to date
the tree and rates of diversification will be estimated.
The successful candidate will be funded by the CONOTAX program (Net
salary: 2,200 per month) and hosted in the Service de Syst�matique
Mol�culaire and the UMR7205 / ISYEB, in the MNHN of Paris. It is a
one-year position that can be extended for another year, and it will
start on January 1st, 2015.
Applicants should have:
- a PhD degree in a relevant field
- experience with molecular laboratory techniques, and in particular NGS
- a good knowledge in molecular phylogeny and in phylogenetic approaches
  for studying diversification
- a good scientific publication record
- a good capacity to handle a scientific project, interact with other
  members of the lab and a willingness to train students.
How to apply: send a full CV (including a list of your skills relevant
for the position and a list of publications) and a 2-3 pages document to
explain how you would handle the project, and in particular what strategy
you would apply to resolve the phylogeny of the Conoidea.  Provide also
the name and coordinates of 2 referees. Send you application before
October 31st, 2014.  Contact (questions, applications): Dr. Nicolas
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