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Mutualism evolution and stability are major outstanding questions in evolutionary biology. To address these questions, I have adopted subterranean ant-trophobiont-microbe interaction networks as a study system. My research is organised into three empirical and one theoretical research lines, and employs a broad range of methods, from computer simulation to advanced microscopy, field sampling, high-throughput sequencing and behavioural experiments. With all these combined, I aim to contribute to a better understanding of the emergence and persistence of cooperation between species.

Education/Academic qualification

Evolutionary Biology, Master, Rijksuniversiteit 

Theoretical Biology, PhD, Rijksuniversiteit 

Biology (Ecology), Bachelor, Wageningen University

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Research Output 2009 2018

  • 9 Article
  • 1 PhD Thesis - Research external, graduation external

Can social partnerships influence the microbiome? Insights from ant farmers and their trophobiont mutualists

Ivens, A. B. F., Gadau, A., Kiers, E. T. & Kronauer, D. J. C. 1 Apr 2018 In : Molecular Ecology. 27, 8, p. 1898-1914 17 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Studying the Complex Communities of Ants and Their Symbionts Using Ecological Network Analysis

Ivens, A. B. F., von Beeren, C., Bluethgen, N. & Kronauer, D. J. C. 2016 In : Annual Review of Entomology. 61, p. 353-+

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Evolution of microbial markets

Werner, G. D. A., Strassman, J. E., Ivens, A., Engelmoer, D. J. P., Verbruggen, E., Queller, D. C., Noë, R., Collins Johnson, N., Hammerstein, P. & Kiers, E. T. 2014 In : Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 111, 4, p. 1237-44 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Ants farm subterranean aphids mostly in single clone groups - an example of prudent husbandry for carbohydrates and proteins?

Ivens, A. B. F., Kronauer, D. J. C., Pen, I., Weissing, F. J. & Boomsma, J. J. 2 Jul 2012 In : BMC Evolutionary Biology. 12

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access