(Epi)mutation is the primary source of (epi)genetic variation and as such a prerequisite for evolutionary change. The impact of whole genome duplications (WGDs) on (epi)mutation remains largely unknown, but the few experiments that have been conducted indicate that (1) the classic population genetic models at the basis of our understanding of ploidy related differences in adaptation rate, are often too naive in their assumptions on mutation rate, (2) heterozygosity can affect mutation rate. Despite the importance of WGD in plant evolution, the bulk of these scarce studies used isogenic strains of yeast, while none used representatives of the 'green lineage'. I will perform a mutation accumulation experiment using several haploid, diploid and tetraploid strains, with different degrees of heterozygosity, of the “green yeast” Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, to study the effects of WGD on the genome-wide (epi)mutation rate and spectrum, and downstream effects on fitness.
Birth date: 31th of december, 1997
2016-2019: Bachelor of Science in Biology, Ghent University
2019-2021: Master of Science in Biology, Ghent University
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