Durand Jonas

PhD student









Tel : +41 (0) 32 718 30 92



My research will focus on evolution of pathogen’s genetic diversity. I will try to answer to the question on how this polymorphism can be maintained through generations.

Many pathogens are highly polymorphic, making their removal more difficult. In the different species of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato, this polymorphism can be found on the gene coding for outer-surface proteins C (OspC) that are important for the infection of the host. Two hypothesis, not mutually exclusive, have been proposed to explain this diversity. According to the host as niche theory, diversity is maintained because certain OspC have a higher fitness in certain host species. Negative frequency-dependent selection theory predicts that rare alleles will be favored because they have to face a weaker selection pressure from the host immune system.
During my PhD, I will focus on two species of Borrelia: B. garinii and B. afzelii. Using next-generation sequencing techniques, I will search how OspC diversity evolved in two populations of ticks during 7 years, and if there is a specific relationship Ospc/host species.


Teaching Responsabilities

Teaching pratical courses in statistics (third year Bachelor students) and in histology (first year Bachelor students in medical science).




Durand Jonas; Legrand Arnaud; Tort Mélodie; Thiney Alice; Michniewicz Radika J; Coulon Aurélie, Aubret Fabien. Effects of geographic isolation on anti-snakes responses in the wall lizard, Podarcis muralis. Amphibia-Reptilia, vol. 33, 2, 2012, 199-206 (8). www.ingentaconnect.com/content/brill/amre/2012/00000033/00000002/art00004