Marina Antonina Zoe Panova


Department of Marine Sciences
Visiting address
45296 Strömstad
Postal address
45296 Strömstad

About Marina Antonina Zoe Panova

Research interests My general research area is molecular mechanisms and evolution of adaptations in natural populations. I am interested in all molecular changes at DNA and RNA level (structural and regulatory mutations, gene expression profiles, chromosomal rearrangements and genome divergence), and how they affect organisms in their natural environments. I am also interested in evolutionary histories of genes and how they can be used to reconstruct histories of populations and species.

My primary research objects are intertidal snails of genus Littorina that show amazing variation in all possible traits within and between the species and are adapted to very different environments. Despite the intriguing biology and ecology, genetic research on Littorina until recently has been limited, but we are working hard on developing genetic resources for this group. Here you can look at Littorina saxatilis transcriptome and here you can see the status of Littorina genome sequencing project.

Current research projects: 1. RAD genome scans of Littorina saxatilis ecotypes in Sweden (Carl André, Kerstin Johannesson, Roger Butlin’s lab in Sheffield University). We are using RAD technique to detect loci and genome regions that are diverged between “wave” and “crab” snail ecotypes on different islands.

2. Gene expression profiling of Littorina (Carl André, Kerstin Johannsson, Anders Tunlid’s lab in Lund University). We are using microarrays to quantify expression of 25,000 transcripts in different ecotypes, populations and species of Littorina – to study the role of gene expression in natural adaptation and identify candidate genes, involved in adaptations.

3. Genetic variation in candidate genes: linking genotypes, phenotype and fitness (PhD project of Mårten Duvetorp). Here were are looking at genetic variation in two genes (aspartate aminotransferase and arginine kinase), that are probably under strong selection in Littorina, trying to understand their function and evolution.

4. Idotea within and outside the Baltic Sea (PhD project of Sonja Leidenberger). Out of seven Atlantic species of Idotea only three live in the Baltic Sea. As a first step to understanding the factors and mechanisms of this rapid adaptation to low salinity we are reconstructing phylogeny of Idotea and phylogeography of the species that entered the Baltic. To facilitate future genetic research on this interesting group, we are sequencing the genome of Idotea balthica, see the genome project status here.

Supervising & teaching I am a supervisor for Mårten Duvetorp PhD project, assistant supervisor for Sonja Leidenberger’s PhD project and supervised 4 Bachelor and Master projects.

I teach conservation genetics in “Ecology and Population Biology” (BIO180) and population genetics in “Fundamental Principles in Ecology and Evolution” (MAR105) Gothenburg University undergraduate courses.

Degrees and professional history From 2011 Researcher at the Centre for Marine Evolutionary Biology (CeMEB), Gothenburg University

2009-2011 Post-doc at the Centre for Marine Evolutionary Biology (CeMEB), Gothenburg University

2007-2009 Post-doc at the Department of Marine Ecology, Gothenburg University

2007 PhD in Marine Ecology, Department of Marine Ecology, Gothenburg University

1997 Master of Science in Biology at St. Petersburg State University