Using evolution and development of Antarctic fishes to understand adaptation to climate changes past and present

Abstract

Climate change is expected to disrupt weather patterns and alter habitat boundaries, exerting pressure on species to either migrate or adapt to their changing environments. Over the past 30 million years, Antarctic notothenioid fishes have diversified from a common ancestor into numerous descendant species following prolonged global cooling. This diversification offers an opportunity to retrospectively analyze their adaptive responses to past climate change events. Moreover, these fish, known for their adaptation to frigid and thermally stable waters, are highly susceptible to ocean warming, making them valuable sentinel species in the present era. Here, I will discuss comparative genomic approaches to reconstruct patterns of trait evolution in relation to historical climate change events. Additionally, I will discuss initial efforts to model the impact of climate change on embryonic development, a vulnerable stage in fish thermal adaptation. These findings establish a foundation for predicting species adaptability in the modern era.

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Keywords

climate change, Antarctic notothenioid fishes, ocean warming, comparative genomic, trait evolution

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