Phylogeny and Biodiversity of Coccolithophorids (EU Project CODENET)
Evolutionary biodiversity: A study of diversity of coccolithophorid biology relative to higher level phylogeny.
- Determine the major patterns of biodiversity in coccolithophorid life-cycles, biomarker composition, photosynthetic pigments, cytology and plastid genome.
- Re-evaluate the phylogeny of the coccolithophorids using separate and combined analyses of: molecular genetic, morphological, biochemical and palaeontological data.
- Calculate divergence times of groups and rates of evolution, including molecular clock calibrations.
- Reconstruct the sequence of major evolutionary steps in coccolithogenesis, lipid biochemistry, plastid evolution, and life cycle differentiation.
Microevolution and species-level variation: A study of microevolutionary pattern and process, species concepts, and the significance of fine-scale genotypic diversity using microsatellite.
- Evaluate which aspects of variation represent genotypic vs. ecophenotipic or ontogenetic variation.
- Determine whether intra-specific variability in morphology, physiology and biochemistry are correlated, defining discrete sub-species.
- Determine whether coevolution occurs by (sub-)species selection or effectively sympatric evolution within ocean-scale populations.
Ecology: An investigation of the prime constraints on coccolithophorid ecology and the ecological significance of biodiversity within the coccolithophorids.
- Determine whether coccolithophorids as a group occupy a distinctive ecological niche, and if so characterise it.
- Determine which aspects of intra- or inter-specific assemblage variation are most valuable for palaeoecological calibrations and develop palaeoecological proxies.
- Determine the extent to which coccolithophorid carbonate accumulation rate is affected by species composition and evolution.
18S rRNA Phylogeny of the Haptophyta
Pretty Pictures of Coccolithophorids
Microsatellites from Emiliania huxleyi
More information concerning the project activities can be found on the CODENET home page.