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Replaying the ‘genome duplication’ tape of life: the importance of polyploidy for adaptation in a changing environment

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 DOUBLE-TROUBLE project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the DOUBLE-TROUBLE project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "DOUBLE-TROUBLE" about.

polyploidisation    establishment    spirodela    majority    shift    tape    model    run    unsuitable    rare    duplication    polyploid    longer    polyploidy    dynamics    considerable    paradox    genomes    environment    underpinnings    life    undergone    evolution    mechanistic    changing    wgds    vivo    limited    evolutionary    duplications    complement    survived    periods    resequencing    plants    provides    environmental    speculation    relationship    observation    climate    silico    experiments    evolvability    hypotheses    eco    outcompete    stress    organisms    chlamydomonas    insights    ancestors    species    stressful    employed    grow    instance    subject    integrating    existence    genome    fascinating    niche    mass    ancient    questions    causes    exceedingly    polyploids    thousands    put    running    digital    animals    obtain    artificial    times    replaying    consequently    extinction    faster    perspective    adaptive    adapt    unravel    paucity    complementary   

Project "DOUBLE-TROUBLE" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: 9052

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 Belgium [BE]
 Total cost 2˙500˙000 €
 EC max contribution 2˙500˙000 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2018-ADG
 Funding Scheme ERC-ADG
 Starting year 2020
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2020-01-01   to  2024-12-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    VIB VZW BE (ZWIJNAARDE - GENT) coordinator 2˙500˙000.00


 Project objective

Thousands of species are polyploid. However, the long-term establishment of organisms that have undergone ancient whole genome duplications (WGDs) has been exceedingly rare and when we analyse the genomes of plants and animals, we can, at most, find evidence for a very limited number of WGDs that survived on the longer term. The paucity of (established) ancient genome duplications and the existence of so many species that are currently polyploid provides a fascinating paradox. There is growing evidence that the majority of ancient WGDs were established at specific times in evolution, for instance during periods of environmental change and periods of mass-extinction. The reason for this ‘stress’-polyploidy relationship has been the subject of considerable speculation and several hypotheses have been put forward to explain this observation: (a) stressful conditions promote polyploid formation; (b) polyploidisation causes a niche shift allowing polyploids to grow in conditions that are unsuitable for their non-polyploid ancestors; and (c) polyploids have an increased evolvability and consequently adapt faster to a changing environment. Here, we want to unravel the mechanistic underpinnings of why and how polyploids can outcompete non-polyploids. We will address these questions by replaying the ‘genome duplication tape of life’ in two different model systems, namely Chlamydomonas and Spirodela. We will run long-term evolutionary (and resequencing) experiments. We will complement these experiments with in-silico experiments based on so-called digital organisms running on artificial genomes. Complementary modelling approaches will also be employed to study the effects of polyploidy from an eco-evolutionary dynamics perspective. By integrating the results obtained from these in vivo and in silico experiments, we will obtain important novel insights in the adaptive potential of polyploids under stressful conditions or during times of environmental and/or climate change.

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The information about "DOUBLE-TROUBLE" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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