The genomics of adaptation in Wolbachia pipientis, an emerging biocontrol agent

  • Woolfit, Meg (Primary Chief Investigator (PCI))
  • Iturbe-Ormaeche, Inaki (Chief Investigator (CI))
  • McGraw, Beth (Chief Investigator (CI))
  • O'Neill, Scott (Chief Investigator (CI))
  • Turelli, Michael (Partner Investigator (PI))

Project: Research

Project Details

Project Description

The bacterium Wolbachia is currently being trialled as a novel biocontrol agent, but we know very little about its potential to adapt to new hosts and environment, which is a key factor in the success of biocontrol efforts. we will investigate the genetic diversity present in natural populations of Wolbachia from around the world, infer patterns of past adaptation from their genomes, and track genomic changes in real time as Wolbachia strains adapt to new hosts in the laboratory. This research will contribute to the successful design and implementation of future biocontrol strategies, and will also answer long-standing questions about genetic diversity and the nature of adaptation symbionts.
Effective start/end date14/04/1031/12/14


  • Australian Research Council (ARC): A$440,000.00