Research & Development  


Academic Projects

Comparative Genomics and Evolutionary Phylogenetics in Australian Marine Bird Lice, Amblycera and Ishnocera. MPhil Project for commencement in 2015.

Title: Comparative genomics of the mitochondrial genome in the chewing louse, Halipeurus diversus. The chewing louse, Halipeurus diversus is an obligate ectoparasite on the Short-tailed Shearwater, Puffinus tenuirostris and the Wedge-tailed Shearwater, Puffinus pacificus. In this project, intraspecific variation of the mitochondrial DNA annotations will be compared in H. diversus from the two shearwater species. Year: 2013-2014. Institution: Not yet determined.

Title: The Fate and Effects of Toxins from Ingested Plastics in Marine Birds: from host to parasite. The gut contents of some marine birds have shown significant amounts of ingested plastic debris. In this project I will be exploring the fate and effect of BPA and Phthalate concentrations from ingested plastic in marine birds and in their coevolved parasites. Individual Mallophagan chewing lice will be examined for BPA and Phthalate derivatives including host feathers, and skin. Comparative genomics of the mitochondrial/nuclear genome will determine if mutations occur within the DNA of parasites due to BPA and Phthalate ingestion. Year: 2013-ongoing. Institution: University of Queensland.

Title: Comparative mitochondrial genomics in the domestic pig louse, Haematopinus suis and the wild pig louse, Haematopinus apri.
The mitochondrial genome of the domestic pig louse, Haematopinus suis and the wild pig louse, Haematopinus apri was annotated to compare the mini-chromosome gene composition and nucleotide structure. Pig louse genomes were also compared with the Human Body Louse mitochondrial genome, Pediculus humanus. Year: 2010-2014. Institution: MPhil project at the School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences (not completed), University of Queensland.

Publication: Haowei Jiang, Stephen C. Barker, and Renfu Shao (2013) "Substantial Variation in the Extent of Mitochondrial Genome Fragmentation among Blood-Sucking Lice of Mammals", Genome Biol Evol. 2013; 5(7): 12981308.