Advanced search
Start date

The complete mitochondrial and nuclear genomes of four species of bumblebees

Grant number: 22/06069-1
Support Opportunities:Research Grants - Visiting Researcher Grant - International
Duration: July 25, 2022 - August 24, 2022
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Genetics - Animal Genetics
Principal Investigator:Maria Cristina Arias
Grantee:Maria Cristina Arias
Visiting researcher: Elaine Aparecida Francoso
Visiting researcher institution: University of London, England
Host Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


Elaine Françoso has the prestigious Skodowska-Curie fellowship and develops her research at Royal Holloway, University of London, UK. Her current project is ambitious and aims investigate the evolution of the interaction between mitochondrial and nuclear genomes, with emphasis on numts (nuclear copies of mitochondrial genes that migrated to nucleus) and heteroplasmy (multiple copies of mitochondrial genomes in the same individual) in bumblebees. This is very innovative research that started with unexpected results during her PhD and later by a postdoc here in Brazil, both under my supervision and with the support of FAPESP (09/07124-1, 10/20548-2, 13/03961-1, 14/25023-6). The results obtained specifically on numts and heteroplasmy were and have been surprising. So far, five articles about these topics have been published, three are in preparation (please see the description of these manuscripts in the cv) and now new data will be generated here in Brazil to complement the research she is developing abroad. To investigate the interaction of nuclear and mitochondrial genomes and understand the evolution of numts and heteroplasmy, 16 species of Bombus will have their nuclear and mitochondrial genomes sequenced with very high quality, combining long reads (Pacbio) + short reads (Illumina) sequencing. Among the 16 Bombus species to be sequenced, three are the Brazilian species Bombus applanatus, Bombus morio and Bombus pauloensis; and the fourth s the Chilean species Bombus dahlbomii. Bombus is a genus with high diversification in Europe and Asia. It would have been easier to select species from Europe for her research project, but Elaine insisted on including Brazilian species and B. dalhbomii because she understands that the results of numts, heteroplasmy and genomes, can be important for these bees and to construct bridges with Brazilian researchers and with Brazil in general, where all her education came from. Elaine was my undergrad, PhD. and Postdoctoral student, and this partnership has been very successful. She helped to expand research lines developed by my team, together we published 18 scientific articles and many more are still to come. The genomes that she will generate are unprecedented, and they will be the first Brazilian species of the Bombus genus to have their complete genomes sequenced. These results will directly contribute to two of my ongoing research projects, both funded by FAPESP, and they will certainly be important for future collaborations. (AU)

Articles published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the research grant:
Articles published in other media outlets (0 total):
More itemsLess items

Please report errors in scientific publications list by writing to: