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2. Evolutionary Biology of Marine Invasions

Session organizers:

April Blakeslee, East Carolina University
Carolyn Tepolt, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute.
Katerina Vasileiadou, Hellenic Centre for Marine Research.
Christina Pavloudi, Hellenic Centre for Marine Research.
Thanos Dailianis, Hellenic Centre for Marine Research.
Tereza Manousaki, Hellenic Centre for Marine Research.

Contact E-mail: blakesleeap14@ecu.edu, kvasileiadou@hcmr.gr

Marine invasions represent natural experiments in evolution, as invasive species spread and adapt to novel environments. In addition, the introduction of novel species to marine systems can impact the evolutionary biology of resident species from the population to community to ecosystem levels.

Often, these evolutionary changes can be very rapid and may take myriad forms, including physiological adaptation and behavioral changes to exploit new environments. Likewise, resident species may evolve quickly in response to strong selective forces exerted by invaders, leading to changes in resident populations, community interactions, and even their environments. However, the field of invasion processes and interactions has remained a "black-box" for many marine systems.

As rates of anthropogenic transport around the globe increase, so do the spread and expansion of a multitude of species that would otherwise be geographically constrained. Discerning sources, timing, and vectors of invasive species are often main objectives in marine genetic studies, while elucidating the adaptive shifts and population dynamics is fundamental for biodiversity conservation and management of stocks. This session aims to advance the understanding of invasion mechanisms, local adaptation processes, and the interactions of introduced species with native populations and marine environments.


Erik Sotka - Combining niche-shift and population genetic analyses predicts rapid phenotypic evolution during invasion

Stacy Krueger-Hadfield - What’s ploidy got to do with it? The evolutionary ecology of haplodiplontic seaweed invasions

Leon Green - Local adaptation of gametes in a Baltic invader

Carolyn Teplot - Rapid adaptation and the success of the European green crab, Carcinus maenas

Kirsty Smith - Is environmental adaptation in the invasive species Didemnum vexillum due to epigenetic mechanisms

Alexis Simon - The population genetics of hybrid zones between introduced and native mussels at the sea-port interface

Pieternella Luttikhuizen - Offshore genetic connectivity among man-made artificial hard substrates

Ryan Carnegie - Evolutionary Ecology of Oyster Diseases in Chesapeake Bay, USA

April Blakeslee - Genetic bottlenecks and species invasions: how do parasites compare to hosts?

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