Associate Professor, Marine Science
Dr. Aranda's main research interests lie in the development of functional genetic tools for reef building corals and other cnidarian model organisms that will allow the systematic analysis of the molecular processes governing symbiosis and coral bleaching. The coral-algal symbiosis hereby serves as a model system to address questions regarding the molecular basis of symbiosis in order to extend our knowledge on the mechanisms and factors determining the nature of symbiotic relationships i.e. mutualistic, commensalistic or parasitic. Central part of this research is the elucidation of the function of key proteins involved in the initiation, maintenance and breakdown of the symbiotic relationship in both partners.
Desired Project Deliverables
Bleaching and re-infecting anemones with different strains of Symbiodinium cultured in the labQuantification of phenotypic changes between host-symbiont combinations during and after heat stress exposure
RNA extraction and gene expression analysis of interesting and informative biomarkers
Perform further analysis on data obtained
Write a (short) manuscript of these analyses