Evolution of intrinsic barriers under gene flow
In the marine snail Littorina saxatilis, multiple strong and extrinsic barriers have evolved under gene flow between ecotypes as modelling studies suggest they might nevertheless evolve. In this project we are looking for evidence of intrinsic barriers. Potential candidates are mis-developing embryos and mis-developing shell shapes, the latter appearing in ecotype crosses. Sequencing data from snails sampled over hybrid zones with more or less deformations of embryos or shells, we try to identify candidate mutations and epistatic interactions involved. We will also initiate using CRISPR/Cas9 knockdown in the snail system, to be able to experimentally test candidate genes.