February 13 2018

11:00 158 HH

This seminar is sponsored by EEB and QC Bio

Alejandra Rodriguez Verdugo
Molecular Microbial Ecology

Evolution of microbial communities in complex environments.


Microbial communities shape life on Earth by driving the global cycling of elements and by influencing health and disease of humans, other animals and plants. Understanding how microbial communities function and respond to environmental change is thus an important goal. To reach this goal, my research integrates across levels of biological organization –individuals, populations, and communities – to study microbial adaptation to complex environments. First, I will provide insights into the genetics of adaptation and its phenotypic consequences in the context of a single species, the bacterium Escherichia coli, adapting to high temperature stress. Second, I will present my research on how two interacting species adapt to fluctuating environments. By combining an experimental approach with synthetic communities and whole-genome sequencing with mathematical modeling I show that: 1) the pace of environmental change shapes community dynamics and, 2) adaptation of one species influences the evolutionary trajectory of a second species. Finally, I will discuss future plans aiming to understand how interactions between individuals and their environment influence how microbial communities respond to environmental change.
































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































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