I am fascinated by the role of host-microbial interactions as a major force in the diversification of life. For several years, I studied the intracellular bacteria Wolbachia, one of the most widespread and influential endosymbionts found in invertebrates. Currently my research focuses on the understanding of host-associated microbiotas and their impact on animal ecology and evolution.
Specifically, I am looking at the gut microbial communities in two vertebrate adaptive radiations: a) the cichlid fishes and b) the Podarcis lizards from the Balearic Islands. The main objectives are to disentangle the role of gut microbiotas in the host trophic adaptation, and reconstruct the dynamics of the symbiosis over temporal and spatial scales. I am addressing these objectives using a highly multidisciplinary system-based approach that integrates ecological and evolutionary theories with comparative metagenomics.
- The Catalan Biogenome project, Societat Catalana de Biologia-IEC
PI: Laura Baldo
Duration: 2020 - 2021
Project title: “The Podarcis lifordi's genome”. PRO2020-S02-BALDO.
- Govern de les Illes Baleares, Consellera d'Educació, Universidad i Recerca.
PI: Giacomo Tavecchia.
Duration: 2020 - 2023
Project title: "THE PARADIGM OF SMALL POPULATION PERSISTENCE: DEMOGRAPHY AND GENETIC OF AN ENDEMIC LIZARD"
- MCOC - Ministerio de Economia y Competitividad
PI: Laura Baldo
Duration: 01/01/2018- 31/12/2020
Project title: “Role of the host-associated microbiotas in the cichlid fish adaptive radiations”.
I have a broad research interests that span from Ecosystem and Landscape Ecology towards Population and Community Ecology. I teach Population and Community Ecology to undergraduates, and Population Viability Analysis and several advanced courses in data analysis and visualization at the master’s level.