Welcome to Angus Davison's lab website.
I am an Associate Professor and Reader in Evolutionary Genetics in the School of Life Sciences at the University of Nottingham. I run a research lab, teach undergraduates and supervise postgraduates. I am also the Careers Officer for the Biology group of degrees. This is my lab home page, otherwise see my University home page, LinkedIn page or @angus_davison.
In my lab, we use snails as a comparative model to understand evolutionary and developmental genetics. In one project, we are using snails to understand the left-right symmetry breaking event that takes place during early development, using both lab and field-based studies: just how is chirality determined at the molecular level? In another project, we are investigating the evolutionary origins of supergenes, using the charismatic snail Cepaea. Finally, as snails are one of the most speciose groups, we are using new technologies to understand how this biodiversity has come about, by investigating a model adaptive radiation of snails in subtropical Japan (Ogasawara). All of these projects are technology led: new DNA sequencing techniques are enabling us to do what was not possible only a few years ago.
"Nature is often complicated" is the opening line from Bryan Clarke's 1979 paper "The evolution of genetic diversity" (Proc. R. Soc. Lond. B 205, 453-474).
Euhdara genome data and Japan visit
As a sideline to his main project on the colour polymorphism of Cepaea, PhD student Paul Richards has generated a RAD Seq library for Euhadra, one of the few snails to vary in their coiling or chirality.
Popgroup is over
Popgroup is over for another year - I am fairly confident that it was a success! This year, Popgroup was organised by myself, Tamsin Majerus, John Brookfield and Sara Goodacre, all Nottingham locals. In all, 225 persons attended from the UK, Europe, North America and several other continents. It was particularly pleasing to see that two Nottingham students, including Paul Richards from my lab, won the best student talk and poster prizes, with Ceridwen Fraser winning best non-student talk (media person and all round eminent snail person Professor Steve Jones was a close second). Registration for Popgroup46 in Glasgow (www.populationgeneticsgroup.org) will open later in the year.
Registration for Popgroup45 (www.populationgeneticsgroup.org) is open - and will soon be closed!
In case you don't know, Popgroup is an annual international conference of population genetics and evolution. This year, Popgroup is being held at Nottingham, organised by myself, Prof John Brookfield, Dr Sara Goodacre and Dr. Tamsin Majerus. More than 170 persons have registered already - still room for a few more before the registration closing date of 9th Dec.
Super genes in the news again
We are delighted to see another supergene paper published in Nature. An added interest is that the authors used our favourite technology, RAD-Seq, to identify a Y-like social chromosome that causes alternative colony organization in fire ants. There is also an accompanying News and Views article.