The project will first of all aim at presenting new and inclusive hypothesis about the evolution of the peracaridean order Amphipoda. In order to reach this goal, the project will be carried out in a 3-step process: 1. Morphological examination of represe ntatives of all amphipod families (number of representatives will depend upon the size of the group and on the morphological unity of the group). Data will continuously be incorporated in a datamatrix (nexus file). 2. The phylogenetic analysis will be car ried out with PAUP*, mainly running on a Mac computer. Collaboration with the High Performance Computing Program at the University of Tromsø and the "Beowulf" parallel-computing-cluster project at the NHM in London will also be established. mputing -cluster project at the NHM in London 3. The results of the morphology based phylogenetic analysis will be independently tested by obtaining DNA sequences from some of the included taxa. Pairs of sister-taxa (or closely related taxa), as suggested by the cladograms, will be compared.
The unique collections of the Natural History Museum in London will provide excellent bases for the first part of the project. Live material suitable for DNA sequencing will be collected both in the ANDEEP expedition and on various cruises in Northern Norway (University of Tromsø).