Katedra zoologie

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Bristol, UK: PhD, bivalves evolution PDF Tisk Email
We announce the availability of a NERC Doctoral Training Partnership
opportunity (PhD studentship) held jointly between the British
Antarctic Survey and Bristol University (through the GW4+ scheme
http://www.bristol.ac.uk/gw4plusdtp/programme/), to commence
in autumn 2015. Students are eligible for full funding if they
are a UK citizen or EU national who has been resident in the
UK for three years at the time the studentship commences. For
further eligibility information see the following link:
Resolving the evolutionary history of a Southern Ocean "hotspot"
family: the philobryid bivalves
The Southern Ocean (SO) is a unique and isolated marine habitat, with
over-deepened continental shelves, oceanography strongly influenced by the
circum-Antarctic current and a low-temperature, stenothermal environment
hosting a vast number of endemic and unusual species. The recent Census
of Antarctic Marine increased the knowledge on known species and their
biogeographic distributions but for most taxa, Southern Ocean diversity
is still greatly underestimated. The Philobryidae (Bivalvia: Arcoida)
are with 13 species one of the most speciose marine bivalve families in
the SO, cover a depth range from the intertidal to the abyssal zone and
have their global diversity hotspot in the SO. Previous genetic work on
this family has been extremely limited.
Despite this diversity, the genetic relationships and shell morphology of
this family are poorly known, possibly due to their small size ( <1.5cm).
This project will assess the evolutionary history of the Southern Ocean
Philobryidae and how past climate change and continental drift has
influenced their species diversification. Preliminary molecular work has
identified a number of cryptic species within nominal species of the
genera *Adacnarca* and *Philobrya* from different locations and depth
in the Southern Ocean, suggesting that even described species require
investigation in terms of species limits, using genetics and morphology.
The British Antarctic Survey holds extensive collections of Southern Ocean
philobryids, including representatives of all described Southern Ocean
species. The student will link genetic and material property tools to
(i) determine the phylogenetic relationships within Southern Hemisphere
Phylobryidae, particularly focusing on Antarctic taxa, using multiple
mitochondrial and nuclear loci and placing this into broader context
within the superfamily Arcoidea, (ii) measure the patterns of divergence
and radiation of Philobryidae within the Southern Ocean, (iii) examine
morphological and material property variation between species, and (iv)
conduct population genetic analysis of population history for selected
philobryid species.
This studentship will include a genetic laboratory component, sequencing
multiple nuclear and mitochondrial genetic loci to investigate
phylogenetic relationships, and conducting ddRAD-seq and subsequent
genomic analysis to investigate population structuring within selected
taxa.  They will also perform morphometric analysis, and conduct high
resolution chemical and structural mapping using Electron Microprobe
Analysis, Atomic force microscopy, and Electron Backscatter Diffraction,
to characterise the shells. The analytical skills developed in this
studentship are highly transferable to a wide range of jobs. The student
will get a solid overview of marine ecology, genetics, bioinformatics,
in-situ chemical and structural analysis. The student will be part of
the vibrant Palaeobiology group at Bristol and the world leading Research
Team at BAS.
Applicants should possess a degree (II.1 minimum)/higher degree in
a relevant subject. Experience of invertebrate biology, appropriate
molecular and data analysis techniques and polar marine ecosystems are
The studentship is expected to last 3.5 years from October 2015,
subject to NERC funding. To apply for this studentship, please send
an expression of interest, CV and names and contact details for two
referees to 
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  by 3rd January 2015. Primary
supervisors are Dr Katrin Linse of the British Antarctic Survey and Dr
Daniela Schmidt of the University of Bristol, with Dr Jennifer Jackson
of the British Antarctic Survey co-supervising. For more about the GW4+
program, see http://www.bristol.ac.uk/gw4plusdtp/programme/

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