Evolutionary and popolation genetics are two basic disciplines, which allow us to study not only the course of evolution at the genetical level, but also can help to solve number of practical problems. Team in our laboratory is interested in the evolution of multigene families, since the question about their origin and following functional diversification is still not completely answered. More specificaly, we study the Idgfs (Imaginal disc growth factors) of Drosophila. Another area of research in our laboratory is the use of genetic markers to resolve taxonomical uncertainites (especially the species identification), of several arthropod groups. We are using mainly PCR amplification and sequencing of the selected genes, but also allozyme analysis. Data are further statistically evaluated with a wide range of standard software such as MEGA, GDA, DNAsp, PAUP, MrBayes and others. Currently, we are also preparing detection of aphid endosymbionts with the use of fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH).
The main goal of the study is to examine the evolution of different members of Drosophila Imaginal disc growth factor (Idgf) gene family. This model covers two so far not very well understood phenomena – evolution of loci in multigene families and evolution of genes acting in development. The phylogenetic approach addresses the question about the origin and rate of evolution of Idgf loci (isolation of the Idgf multigene family from other insect species), while the population genetic approach (the analysis of data collected from individuals from at least two different populations of D. melanogaster) examines the extent of natural selection affecting the individual loci, so that the demographic effects can be clearly distinguished from possible selective forces. Our results suggest that time of duplications corresponds with the time of formation of Drosophilidae family and Idgfs multigene family can not be older than the whole suborder Brachycera (muscoid flies). Significant heterogeneity in the distribution of polymorphism and divergence was found in almost all family members; however tests revealed that only Idgf1 is under balancing selection.
[PI: M. Žurovcová]
The main goal of this project to evaluate with the use of molecular markers aphid populations after about 15 years after RWA detection in the Czech republic, to compare of the differences of over-all invasive streams and local populations originating in Central Asia and the classification of the interactions of the RWA invader and the new environment (changes in the life-cycle, distribution zonation and host plant spectrum). The research results are useful for plant protection in the CR – because an invasion of D. noxia increases, a zonation and host-specialization changes. Preliminary results from the Mediterrean area show higher number of haplotypes than in the USA, but without clear geographical structure.
[PI: M. Žurovcová]