Current Research


The evolution of sexual dimorphism throughout the genome

My current research focuses on the evolution of sexual dimorphism. Selection causes changes in the heritable genetic variation, but, if sexually antagonistic selection acts of genes that affect both sexes, then the response to selection will be impeded in one or both of the sexes. Sex differences can evolve once a sex-specific genetic architecture becomes available, because selection can move each sex towards its phenotypic optimum without reducing fitness in the other. The constraint that occurs as a result of intralocus sexual conflict has been the focus of my PhD thesis. In this thesis I studied the sex-specific genetic architecture underlying traits in Drosophila melanogaster using gene expression data, univariate and multivariate phenotypic data, and novel chromosome insertion lines which allowed me to separate the genetic (co)variance of the sex chromosomes (XY) and the autosomes.


My PhD is funded via Uppsala University & Vetenskapsrådet. I have secured additional funding from the following organisations since 2012 (brackets indicate multiple successful applications):

  • Knut & Alice Wallenbergs Stiftelse
  • Helge Ax:son Johnsons Stiftelse
  • Kungliga Vetenskapsakedmien (*2)
  • Stiftelsen Lars Hiertas Minne (*2)
  • Uppsala University Graduate School on Genomes and Phenotypes (*3)

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Robert Griffin, Evolutionary Biologist


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