2nd Year MEME student Charles Xu (cohort 2014) has attracted a lot of media attention with his first-author article that was recently published in Plos ONE: “Spider Web DNA: A New Spin on Noninvasive Genetics of Predator and Prey” (Xu et al., PLOS One, 2015, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0142503). In this paper the authors describe a novel method to extract insect and spider DNA from spider webs. His publication was featured at CBSnews.com and The Scientist and several other online journals.
During his first year as a MEME student, Luohao Xu (MEME cohort 2014-2016) did a 5 month project at Uppsala University in the lab of Professor Hans Ellegren. We congratulate him with their resulting publication in the journal Molecular Biology and Evolution, titled: “Quantitative mass spectrometry reveals partial translational regulation for dosage compensation in chicken” (Uebbing et al., Mol Biol Evol, 2015, doi: 10.1093/molbev/msv147).
MEME graduate Deniz Salali (MEME cohort 2010-2012) is co-author of the Science publication “Sex equality can explain the unique social structure of hunter-gatherer bands” (Dyble et al., Science 348: 796-798, 2015, doi: 10.1126/science.aaa5139). Salali is currently a PhD student in the Laboratory of Biological Anthropology at University College London (UK), where she studies social structure, cultural transmission and cooperation in Mbendjele (BaYaka) hunter-gatherers.
EMPSEB provides a platform for PhD students studying Evolutionary Biology to present their work and to meet their peers from all over Europe. It takes place in a different European city each year and is organized by current PhD students in that country. The meeting is also open for Master students and this year it is partially organized by MEME alumni.
Read the official invitation below.
Registration is now open for EMPSEB21:
The 21st European Meeting for PhD Students in Evolutionary Biology
Organised by the University of Edinburgh
Location: University of Stirling – Stirling, UK
Date: September 8-12th, 2015
To register, please visit the following link:
For more information on the conference please visit our website:
We look forward to seeing you in Stirling in September!
Application for the MEME cohort of 2015 is now closed. We have received 190 applications that meet all requirements and will enter the second round of selection. All remaining candidates will be notified about the outcome of the second round by the end of March 2015.
After having successfully passed the EU ‘Quality Review’, we are currently (deadline March 6, 2015) writing a proposal for the continuation of funding by the EU. Our prognosis is that we can offer at least 5 (and perhaps up to 10) scholarships per intake for the next three cohorts of MEME students.
The MEME programme was established in 2010 on the basis of an Erasmus Mundus grant by the EU that covered the five cohorts (2010/11, 2011/12, 2012/13, 2013/14, 2014/15). To be eligible for continued funding (now under the new Erasmus+ scheme of the EU), all 50 Erasmus Mundus Joint Master’s Programmes having started in 2010 were invited to participate in a “quality review,” an extensive assessment procedure including a self-assessment of the programme, the assessment of student satisfaction by the EMA (the Erasmus Mundus Students and Alumni Association), and interviews of the programme coordinators with a panel of experts in graduate education. The overall evaluation of the MEME programme was very good. Moreover, MEME is one of the 19 programmes considered to be of such quality to be included in the Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Degree Catalogue. This means that most probably we can count on the continuation of EU funding for an intake of four more cohorts.
During the review process we received various useful suggestions; these will be taken at heart and will undoubtedly lead to further improvements of the programme. In general, however, the satisfaction of students and the EU was very high, as exemplified by the following student statement (EMA Assessment of Student Satisfaction): “I really enjoyed my studies in MEME and I wouldn’t wanna have missed it for the world! Best two years of my life, professionally and personally!
MEME graduate Ricardo Caliari Oliveira (MEME cohort 2010) co-authored the Science publication “Conserved class of queen pheromones stops social insect workers from reproducing” (Van Oystaeyen et al., Science 343:287-290, 2014, doi: 10.1126/science.1244899). Ricardo is currently a PhD student in the Laboratory of Socioecology and Social Evolution, University of Leuven (Belgium).
Homa Papoli’s (MEME cohort 2011) Master’s research project on the evolution of sex chromosomes has been accepted for publication in the prestigious journal Molecular Biology & Evolution (impact factor >10). It will soon be published under the titel: H. Papoli Yazdi & H. Ellegren (2014): Old but not (so) degenerated – slow evolution of largely homomorphic sex chromosomes in ratites. Homa is presently a PhD student at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig (Germany).
MEME students presenting the MEME flag at the “Roof of the World” in the Pamir Mountains while participating in a National Geographic expedition in the autumn of 2013.