Molecular Ecology Lab

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The main aim of Molecular Ecology Laboratory is to use the tools and concepts of molecular genetics to address a variety of complex fundamental questions in ecology, taxonomy and evolutionary biology. Our emphasis is on documenting genetic diversity and the distribution of genetic variation among populations and species mainly of two groups of organisms – plants and insects. Currently, we focus on DNA sequencing of nuclear, mitochondrial, and chloroplast DNA fragments.

We invite motivated masters and PhD students who share our interests in answering interesting ecological, taxonomical and evolutionary questions using molecular methods to join our lab. (Contact: dr Krzysztof Szpila [office 283] or dr Marcin Piwczyński [office 266]).

The laboratory is constantly growing and evolving to add additional equipment for new applications. Current equipment in the lab includes:

  • 2 PCR thermal cyclers (Eppendorf Mastercycler Personal, Eppendorf Mastercycler Pro)
  • 2 centrifuges (Eppendorf Mini Spin Plus, Eppendorf 5424 R)
  • Gel documenting system (PhotoDoc-It)
  • Horizontal electrophoresis systems (Biorad)
  • Vortexers and hotplates

Current research projects:

  • Phylogenetic utility of chloroplast intergenic spacers in reconstruction the relationships within various taxa of tribe Scandiceae (Apiaceae) [Daucus, Ferula and Chaerophyllum] (dr Marcin Piwczyński)
  • Barcoding of forensically important species from family Sarcophagidae (Diptera) (dr Krzysztof Szpila, dr Marcin Piwczyński, dr Edyta Deja-Sikora)
  • Phylogeny of family Sarcophagidae with emphasis on subfamilies Milltograminae and Paramacronychinae (Diptera) (dr Krzysztof Szpila, dr Marcin Piwczyński, dr Edyta Deja-Sikora)
  • The phylogenetic relationship between individuals of moth Ostrinia nubilalis originated from various host plants (maize, hop and mugwort) (dr Marcin Piwczyński, Prof. Jarosław Buszko)