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Personal information

Department of Ecological Science
Faculty of Science
Vrije Universiteit
De Boelelaan 1085
1081 HV Amsterdam
Office: W&N-H147
E-mail: joris.koene@vu.nl
Departmental website
Research group website


The main interest of my research group revolves around reproduction in simultaneous hermaphrodites. Many of the questions we address focus on issues of sperm competition and sexual conflict and attempt to integrate different biological levels (e.g., behaviour, evolution, ecology, physiology, neuro-endocrinology). We make use of a range of different techniques, among which quantification of behaviour and resource investment, molecular phylogeny reconstruction, paternity analysis, biochemical and genetic identification and analysis of pheromones and allohormones, immunohistochemistry, micro-surgery, neuroanatomy and physiological experiments. For many of our experiments we use the model species (great pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis), but we also use these findings in comparative approaches within freshwater snails. We also explore sexual conflicts caused by some of the more bizarre reproductive behaviours found in hermaphrodites, such as love darts and other strange sexual attributes. The latter includes the use of the model species Cornu aspersum and other land snails. Our aim is to integrate our findings into a complete and general picture of why and how sexual selection - in this case including sperm competition and sexual conflict - affects simultaneous hermaphrodites. Such a broad synthesis is expected to significantly contribute to a full understanding of hermaphroditism as a reproductive strategy.

Ancillary activities

  • Naturalis | Leiden | Onbekend | 2013-10-27 - present
  • Naturalis | Leiden | Research Associate | 2017-11-28 - present

Ancillary activities are updated daily


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