The increase in anthropogenic activities in the last century has made the Baltic Sea polluted and the most hypoxic area in the world. Our aim is to understand how human and climate-driven evolutionary changes affects species adaptation in the Baltic Sea by examining sediment revived resting spores with records of past changes in environment and biota. Currently, a collaborative team of mainly Swedish researchers working on the REVIVE project is examining changes in genomic signatures of ~ 8000 year-old sediment revived resting spores in diatoms (Chaetoceros spp.) to reconstruct evolutionary changes in changing environments in the Baltic Sea.
We are also examining genomic changes in germinated and ungerminated Chaetoceros spores over long timescales. The results will help formulate future projects to understand adaptive evolutionary trajectory of diatoms. To enhance the research field and promote networking and capacity building in the Baltic area, the current network proposal aims to invite international collaborators to this effort for exchange of ideas, best practices, data and materials. The envisioned research network is being built to maintain and foster interactivity and collaboration between strong groups active in the field and also expand the scope and exchange ideas on the potential of resurrected dormant spores to reconstruct evolutionary adaptation of diatoms and phytoplanktons to changing environments due to human actions and climate change in the Baltic regio.