Paul Herrera
research
people
news
links
opportunities
software
teaching
contact
home

research interests:

I graduated from the University of Malta in Biology and Chemistry, but as I was particularly interested in evolutionary processes and animal behaviour, I did my MSc in Evolutionary and Behavioural Ecology at the University of Exeter in Falmouth.

My PhD project focuses on the microbiota of D. melanogaster during adaptation to novel (laboratory) environments. I will analyse the diversity in the microbiota of flies which have evolved separately under two laboratory conditions (hot and cold) for more than 3 years. In addition to the gut microorganisms, I will also study the endosymbiont Wolbachia. These flies are infected with different strains of Wolbachia and previous experiments demonstrated pronounced habitat-specific dynamics of the Wolbachia strains. However, the cause of such specific behaviour has yet to be explained. By conducting numerous experiments under controlled conditions, I will attempt to identify these underlying factors.