tel: +32 56 24 60 59
My research groups studies the evolutionary ecology of stress responses with a focus on host-parasite interactions. More in particular, we focus on long-term coevolutionary dynamics and the role of frequency dependent selection and genotype x genotype interactions. We investigate the effect of changing environments and the role of meta-community processes in these interactions. Our research expertise consists of in vivo experimentation, theoretical modeling and genomics. We use the aquatic invertebrate Daphnia as a model system. We study trade-offs in defenses of Daphnia towards multiple antagonists, make historical reconstructions of Daphnia-stress interactions and develop host-parasite coevolution models on particular assets of long-term time shift experiments. My research group recently invested in functional genomics, transcriptomics and epigenetics to unravel the molecular underpinnings of these coevolutionary interactions. A second recent research focus is the role of the host microbiome in stressful adaptations.
- Decaestecker E., Labbé P., Ellegaard K., Allen J., Little T. 2011. Candidate immune gene expression in the ecological genetics model Daphnia. Developmental and Comparative Immunology. vol.35 (10) , pp. 1068-1077
- Verreydt D., De Meester L., Decaestecker E., Villena M., Van Der Gucht K., Vannormelingen P., Vyverman W., Declerck S. 2012. Dispersal-mediated trophic interactions can generate apparent patterns of dispersal limitation in aquatic metacommunities. Ecology letters. vol.15 (3) , pp. 218-226
- Decaestecker E., De Gersem H., Michalakis Y., Raeymaekers J. 2013. Damped long-term host–parasite Red Queen coevolutionary dynamics: a reflection of dilution effects ?. Ecology Letters. vol. , pp. 1455-1462
- Coopman M., Muylaert K., Lange B., Reyserhove L., Decaestecker E. 2014. Context dependency of infectious disease: the cyanobacterium Microcystis aeruginosa decreases White Bacterial Disease in Daphnia magna. Freshwater Biology. vol.59 (4) , pp. 714-723
- Decaestecker E., Verreydt D., De Meester L., Declerck S. 2015. Parasite and nutrient enrichment effects on Daphnia interspecific competition. Ecology. vol.96 (5) , pp. 1421-1430