The reprogramming of parental methylomes during early embryogenesis has been well characterized in some vertebrate species such as zebrafish, mouse and human, however, there is very little study attempted to investigate the DNA methylation dynamics during early development in invertebrates. It has been reported that the amphipod crustacean Parhyale hawaiensis has a moderate CpG methylation in the genome, meanwhile, the methylation pattern of parhyale resembles the pattern observed in vertebrates, that the methylated cytosines are mainly presented in the transposable element as well as other repetitive elements, promoter and gene bodies. Therefore, Parhyale hawaiensis provides a great opportunity for studying invertebrate DNA methylation dynamics during early development.

In my project, I use Parhyale as the animal model to investigate the DNA methylation in relation to the gene expression and transposon activity which affect early development. I will perform a detailed analysis of the transcriptome and the methylome throughout different developmental stages to improve our understanding of the DNA methylation dynamics during the parhyale early embryogenesis. The study hopes to gain a comprehensive picture of the gene transcription and DNA methylation landscapes that are present during the maternal to zygotic transition, as well as to identify the potential function of DNA methylation in early development, which could contribute to increasing our understanding of the fundamental questions in developmental biology


BSc in Animal Science at Nanjing Agricultural University

MSc in Animal Science at University of Copenhagen

Joined Aboobaker’s lab at 2018 for DPhil.