Gene duplication, gene regulation and the evolution of snake venom
My research investigates the role of gene and genome duplication in vertebrate evolution, with recent emphasis on the role of these processes in the evolution and diversification of snake venom. In particular I am interested in discovering the origin of snake venom toxins and the mechanisms by which they are duplicated and regulated.
I have recently been carrying out comparative transcriptomic studies of venom glands and other body tissues from venomous and non-venomous snakes using 2nd generation sequencing platforms (primarily Illumina HiSeq) in order to shed light on the spatial and temporal expression patterns of genes encoding known and novel venom toxins. These data have led to some surprising conclusions about what constitutes a venom toxin and how these genes have (and have not) evolved. Further detail of these and related projects can be found at www.johnmulley.com, Twitter @JohnMulley.
The proposed research studentship will build on these existing resources and discoveries to develop a comprehensive understanding of the composition of snake venom, the process(es) by which it evolves and the mechanisms which are responsible for the production of venom at the DNA/RNA level.
How good is research at Bangor University in Agriculture, Veterinary and Food Science?
(joint submission with Aberystwyth University)
FTE Category A staff submitted: 18.20
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