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Large-scale diversity patterns in herbivorous insects are generally considered to be the result of selective responses to their host-plants diversification. However, little attention has been paid to the effect of other factors in species diversification. Endosymbiotic bacteria have been suggested to play an important role in insect adaptation, increasing the fitness of their hosts in specific environments. In this project we aim to tell apart the contribution of biotic and abiotic factors on the extraordinary diversification of phytophagous insects. To this aim, we chose a three-way interaction as a model system: a Cinara aphid, its host plants and their community of bacterial endosymbionts.
I am an evolutionary biologist working on macroevolution. My main interest is to investigate patterns of biotic assemblage, with special emphasis on the processes shaping diversity patterns (speciation, extinction and dispersal). I am also interested in the fossil record and in its integration with current evidence to provide more realistic scenarios of the past. During my master thesis, I studied body adaptations of Neanderthal lineages, to understand the effect of climate change over body patterns, and gained experience on the principles and practices of working with fossils. I finished my PhD in 2013 at the Real Jardín Botánico-CSIC (Madrid), where I combined probabilistic approaches, fossil evidence and a variety of molecular markers to reconstruct the evolutionary history of plants. During this period, I gained expertise in molecular biology, biogeography, phylogenetic comparative analyses and ecological niche modeling techniques. I have spent the last years in France, first working under an AgreenSkills postdoctoral contract, where I studied plant-insect interactions using a variety of next generation sequencing techniques (metagenomics). Currently I study the drivers of diversification, including the role of the Andes and other environmental changes, in the origin of the outstanding Neotropical diversity.
Meseguer AS*, Lobo JM, Beerling D, Ruhfel B, Davis C, Jousselin E, Sanmartín I., 2018. Reconstructing deep-time paleoclimate legacies in the clusioid Malpighiales unveils their role in the evolution and extinction of the boreotropical flora. Global Ecology and Biogeography (in press).
Meseguer AS, Coeur d’Acier A, Clamens AL, Godefroid M, Jousselin E., 2017. Evolutionary history of symbiotic associations in aphids: Buchnera aphidicola has changed flatmate along the diversification of Cinara. Molecular ecology 26: 2363-2378.
Sanmartín I, Meseguer AS., 2016. Phylogenetics and biogeographic approaches to the study of extinction: from timetrees to patterns of biotic assemblage. Frontiers in Genetics 7: 1-17. Doi: 10.3389/fgene.2016.00035.
Meseguer AS, Lobo JM, Ree R, Beerling DJ, Sanmartín I., 2015. Integrating fossils, phylogenies, and niche models into Biogeography to reveal the evolutionary history of a lineage: the case of Hypericum (Hypericaceae). Systematic Biology 64 (2): 215-232.
Hoorn C, Wesselingh FP, Steege H Ter, Bermudez MA, Mora A, Sevink J, Sanmartín I, Sanchez-Meseguer A, Anderson CL, Figueiredo JP, Jaramillo C, Riff D, Negri FR, Hooghiemstra H, Lundberg J, Stadler T, Särkinen T, Antonelli A., 2010. Amazonia Through Time: Andean Uplift, Climate: Change, Landscape Evolution, and Biodiversity. Science 330, 927-931.