Origin and evolution of the sexes and reproductive systems: novel insights from a distant eukaryotic lineage
Evolutionary, Population and Environmental Biology (LS8)
Laboratoire de Biologie intégrative des modèles marins
Institute of Biological Sciences
“If there were no limits to your research, what would you do?”
When I first thought about applying for an ERC grant, I convinced myself that regardless of the outcome of the application, submitting a proposal would be an intellectually stimulating exercise. The fact that you can focus on an outstanding question without having to worry about how much it will cost was a truly remarkable experience! I decided to tackle a very old scientific issue (the origin and evolution of sex chromosomes) from a different perspective, using a group of organisms that are neither plants nor animals, namely brown algae. These organisms are highly interesting to study sex determination, but remain largely under-explored in terms of genomes. The experiments involved the sequencing of multiple algal genomes, which required sophisticated, costly techniques that only an ERC grant could cover. I was also grateful that the ERC took into account the fact that I have three children, and gave me an extended deadline to submit my application for a Starting Grant.