Milan Malinsky

PostDoc in the group of Prof. Walter Salzburger

Current Research

Molecular basis of convergent evolution between cichlid fishes of lakes Malawi and Tanganyika

How and why does evolution repeat itself in similar environments? Instances of convergent evolution provide unique opportunities to address this question and facilitate the discovery of common rules of organismal diversification. Cichlids of lakes Malawi and Tanganyika present some of the most iconic examples of this phenomenon. For example, Petrotilapia of Lake Malawi and Petrochromis of Lake Tanganyika, although representing unrelated branches on the tree of life, resemble each other not only in general appearance but in minute details of their anatomy. I plan to establish whether these convergent phenotypes evolved due to shared molecular mechanisms, on the level of individual mutations, genes, or pathways. Where shared mechanisms are established, I plan to investigate whether they originate by selection from shared ancestral polymorphisms, through gene-flow of adaptive alleles between the lakes, or due to independent de novo mutations. These will be amongst the first and best powered unbiased genome-wide analyses of convergent evolution in multicellular organisms.

Curriculum Vitae

2016 -

EMBO Fellowship at University of Basel, Switzerland

2011 - 2015

PhD in Mathematical Genomics, University of Cambridge, UK;
Thesis title: Genomic diversity and speciation in East African cichlid fish

2010 - 2011

Masters in Computational Biology, University of Cambridge, UK

2007 - 2010

BSc Computer Science, University of Birmingham, UK