Principal investigator: Marjo Saastamoinen

The broad aim of our research is to understand the processes and the underlying genetic mechanisms that allow organisms in the wild to cope with environmental variation. Our main study system is the Glanville fritillary butterfly (Melitaea cinxia) metapopulation in the Åland Islands. This classic metapopulation consists of a network of 100s of local populations that exist in a stochastic balance between local extinctions and re-colonizations. The long-term population level data on the butterfly and numerous related ecological factors such as host plant density and parasitism prevalence, together with newly developed genomic tools allows us to synthesise in a multidisciplinary fashion the importance of both ecological and genetic factors influencing life history variation in the wild.


Melitaea cinxia - Glanville fritillary


Group Leader, PI Marjo Saastamoinen
Center of Excellence in Metapopulation Biology
Department of Biosciences
PO Box 65 (Viikinkaari 1)
FI-00014 University of Helsinki