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“EPIgenetic impacts on early-stage SPECiation and adaptive radiation”

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "EpiSpec" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: BS8 1QU

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country United Kingdom [UK]
 Total cost 183˙454 €
 EC max contribution 183˙454 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.3.2. (Nurturing excellence by means of cross-border and cross-sector mobility)
 Code Call H2020-MSCA-IF-2014
 Funding Scheme MSCA-IF-EF-ST
 Starting year 2015
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2015-04-01   to  2017-03-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    UNIVERSITY OF BRISTOL UK (BRISTOL) coordinator 183˙454.00


 Project objective

Phenotypic plasticity plays a key role at the onset of the speciation process, facilitating diversification though the induction of novel phenotypes in response to distinct environments. Via genetic accommodation and genetic assimilation, this influence may extend throughout the speciation process and beyond, into subsequent speciation events. While the epigenetic regulation of gene expression that mediates phenotypic plasticity has been extensively studied in lab-based model organisms, very little is known about epigenetic variation in natural populations. This project will be the first epigenetic study explicitly focused on the speciation process. Using cutting-edge techniques, the applicant will characterize DNA methylation variation within and among the sympatric species of a recently discovered endemic cichlid fish radiation in Lake Massoko, Tanzania. Specifically the applicant will test: if 1) newly formed species differ in the distributions of epigenetic marks across the genome, 2) genomic variants linked to phenotypic divergence among species are in genomic regions unusually high in DNA methylation, as expected under a hypothesis of epigenetic differences preceding fixed nucleotide differences during adaptive divergence, 3) genomic regions diverging in patterns of methylation among incipient species are also exhibiting high levels of methylation in populations of Astatotilapia calliptera, the ancestral, colonizing species. The results of this pioneering project will provide the first empirical evidence of the importance of epigenetic variation during the emergence of new species.

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The information about "EPISPEC" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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