Camponotus mating flight

On the first really hot day of spring Camponotus have their mating flights. Today we collected C. fellah from the population that lives on campus in the Weizmann Institute (because that's where samples for GAGA reference genome sequencing were collected). With the help of Ofer Feinrman and his group we managed to collect very large numbers of males from multiple colonies. We have more than 100 males from a single large colony, which is ideal for our purpose - genomic map construction (as part of our BSF project). The samples will be processed for DNA extraction and RAD-seq library construction by our robot Noah. The sequencing data will be used for genotype calling and linkage map construction. Here are some photos, taken by Pnina obviously:


Microbiome workshop

Our workshop on "Omics for environmental and host-associated microbiomes" was a smashing success (see the program). With more than 40 participants we could not find one who was not excited and ecstatic about microbiomes and metagenomes. This was the fifth Haifa winter workshop in bioinformatics and genomics. We're now trying to decide the topic for next year...

Microbiome workshop participants

Sequencing of 2nd draft genome for Cataglyphis niger with GAGA

We recently sent for publication the first draft genome for Cataglyphis niger, which was done by Tal using high-coverage (>100X) Illumina sequencing of a single haploid male. This draft genome was rather complete (>90% BUSCO) but quite fragmented (N50=18Kb). This is because we had only short-insert paired-end libraries. The service provider failed to deliver the long-insert mate-pair libraries we ordered. We also tried 10X sequencing, but the assembly was not much better then Tal's assembly (even they can't explain why!).

So now we did Pacbio sequencing through the GAGA consortium. The results were not optimal: 7Kb average read length, 2 million reads (50X coverage). We're looking into the possible causes (extraction?), and we will probably try again. But already with these data we got a dramatic improvement in N50 size - from 18Kb to 160Kb. It wasn't easy to achieve this assembly, and we finally did that by combining all the different types of sequencing data in a hybrid assembly approach by SPAdes.

הרצאת מדע על ההר

איל ידבר על ״פרדוקס האבולוציה של אלטרואיזם״ במסגרת סדרת ההרצאות ״מדע על ההר״, המיועדות לקהל הרחב

נמלים לוקחות חופשת מחלה

התפרסם מחקר מהמעבדה של לורן קלר בשוויץ שהראה שנמלים שנדבקות במחלה מרחיקות את עצמן משאר חברותיהן, ובכך מצמצמות את הסיכון להתפשטות המחלה בקן. הארץ פרסם כתבה על המחקר

וזה הלינק למאמר המדעי

איל התראיין בנושא בערוץ 11 אצל יעקב אחימאיר, וגם בתכנית שלושה שיודעים אצל דודו ארז ברדיו כאן תרבות