Fly-ing Evolution: Fruit flies disclose their secrets of adaptation to Vienna’s PhD students

Why do some flies recover from severe temperature shocks much faster than others? And under which circumstances could these develop into a new species? PhD students of the Vienna Graduate School of Population Genetics hunt for small but important genetic variations of single flies. Others work on the theoretical basis of evolutionary questions. Hosted by the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, eleven experienced scientists from four Viennese institutions train selected students in experimental and theoretical population genetics, biomathematics, statistics and bioinformatics.

“The beauty of population genetics lies in evolution becoming visible as well as measurable. Yet, there’s a lack of well-trained researchers in the field“, agree Christian Schlötterer and Joachim Hermisson, speakers of the program. Financed last year by the Austrian Science Fund, only the most talented candidates make it into the program by passing a competitive application procedure. The junior researchers will be equipped with the necessary skills to interpret the constantly increasing, massive amounts of sequencing data in evolutionary and conservation biology.

Applicants are encouraged to apply until 13 February 2011 at www.popgen-vienna.at.

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