View of the Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise National Park. Photo by Giorgio Bertorelle
To assess the fitness of our Adriatic sturgeons (Acipenser naccarii) we started to investigate the response to diverse stimuli. Among them, we chose to further explore the response to light (phototaxis) in our inbred and outbred stocks. A positive phototactic response can be linked to higher success in finding new sources of food, since many potential … Continue reading Studying the phototactic response of our Adriatic sturgeons 19.07.21
One of the objectives of Endemixit is to increase public awareness about biodiversity conservation and the use of innovative genetic and genomic approaches as modern tools to protect the Italian biological heritage. This goal can be reached also involving school teachers and students in specific educational programs. For this reason, we are developing a dissemination … Continue reading Spreading the word: genetics and conservation in secondary schools in Abruzzo 23.06.2021
We finally completed the Marsican bear karyotype. We have cultured bear cells in vitro, blocked them during mitosis and took a picture of the chromosomes. The Marsican bear, like all mammals, has male heterogamy. This means that, just as in humans, males have XY sex chromosomes while females have XX. These data will be necessary … Continue reading Chromosomes of the Marsican bear 17.06.2021
We just received the second set of data from the re-sequencing runs of our ENDEMIXIT samples. It is therefore time to write a short summary of what we got.In total, more than five thousand of billions of DNA bases were sequenced, belonging to 121 individuals from 13 species: our five species of interest along with … Continue reading Here comes the data! 06.05.2021
ENDEMIXIT aims to preserve Italian species at extinction risk by studying their genome. Why the genome? The genome can be considered as the software that runs a computer, and by looking at the genome of species, we can understand if they are doing well or are endangered. One of the crucial information that we can … Continue reading Studying genomes to save endangered species 23.03.2021
After a period of acclimatization, our sturgeons are ready for the firsts measurements necessary to assess their fitness. Size and weight are two parameters often used to evaluate fitness, especially when it comes to fish. It is generally expected, all things being equal, that individuals with a better overall health condition will show a higher … Continue reading Assessing the growth rate of our Adriatic sturgeons 9.03.2021
What if the evolutionary history of a species over the last millions of years could be reconstructed using genomic information from a few currently living individuals? This may sound like science fiction but has become a reality thanks to the recent revolution in sequencing techniques. As the DNA is transmitted across individuals from all their … Continue reading Reading DNA to reconstruct the demographic history of species
We have finally finished the DNA extraction for most of the project species. This was not an easy task considering the different origin of the samples: bear’s blood and muscle, lizard’s muscle, butterfly’s head and thorax, frog skin and sturgeon fin tissue.We tested mainly two methods: extraction through Phenol/Chloroform/IAA and PureLink ® Genomics mini kit. … Continue reading Different study species means different type of sample to deal with! 17.02.2021
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