Our research interests lie in studying how genetic variation contributes to fish diversification and adaptation with genomics. There are two major research topics in my lab.
1. Gen(om)e duplication and consequence in fish
Gene duplication is commonly believed to be major evolutionary significance. The successful diversification of teleost fishes has been thought as a result of the whole-genome duplication in their common ancestor. Consequently, many duplicated genes are in the current teleost genomes, which makes teleost fishes one of the best model system to study gene duplication and their consequence. For example, our earlier study found that indels are important driving forces of duplicated gene evolution (Guo et al., 2012). With this topic, we utilize available fish genome data to characterize how duplicated genes evolve in fish genome (Guo 2017; Wang & Guo 2021), and eventually to understand their role during the successful radiation of teleosts (Li & Guo, 2020).
2. Ecological adaptation in fish
Local adaptation is when a population has evolved to be more well-suited to its environment than other populations of the same species, and is difficult to detect in marine fishes with large population size, e.g., due to weak population structure, low genetic differentiation, no adaptive variation, etc. Our earlier studies show that local adaptation could be inferred by using population genomics with integrating landscape genomics approach (Guo et al., 2015; 2016a; 2016b), and genomics has revolutionarily contributed to our undersanding of ecological adapataion in fish (Wang & Guo 2019). As such, we use population genomics approach with next generation sequencing (NGS) data to identify the genetic signature of adaptation in wild fish population, e.g., the divergence between marine and freshwater sticklebacks (Guo et al., 2019; Wang et al., 2020), the genetic basis of ecological adaptation in carps, loaches, salmons, etc.
3. Evolutionary significance of diversification in funtional traits and their genetic basis in fish
Our research is supported by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People´s Republic of China (MOST), and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC).