Louise Lassalle


My name is Louise Lassalle and I started my PhD at the Universiteit van Amsterdam in September. I want to investigate the role of phenotypic plasticity in evolutionary scenarios and speciation.  I will focus my research on the plasticity expressed in the Ambystomae genus (Salamanders) through the expression of juvenile cannibalism, metamorphosis and paedomorphosis (mature individual with remaining juvenile characters) in the genus. Indeed, across this genus some species express obligatory metamorphosis or obligatory paedomorphosis, while other species can express both. Even within a plastic species variation in frequency of the different morphs have been observed. At a same level cannibalism is wildly spread through Ambystoma sp. but not always express at the population level. Using eco-evolutionary modelling I will try to find explanation to those numerous plastic and evolutionary variations that are observed in the nature.