Sissel Jentoft

Image of Sissel Jentoft
Norwegian version of this page
Phone +47 22857239
Mobile phone +47 90514752
Room 4315
Visiting address Blindernveien 31 Kristine Bonnevies hus 0371 Oslo
Postal address Postboks 1066 Blindern 0316 Oslo

Main research topics

My main research topics includes marine genomics, behavioral and functional genomics as well as population genomics/genetics, where I am using recent advancement within high-throughput sequencing technologies to further understand how genomes are influenced by adaptation to changing climates and environments. Below, I list some of the ongoing projects that I am involved in:

  • The Nansen Legacy (, with an overarching goal to establish a holistic understanding of a changing marine Arctic climate and ecosystem. Within the sub-task: T2-3.1. Climate change and fisheries: Spatial environmental variables and genomics we will investigate the roles of spatiotemporal population structure and possible local adaptations in three key fish in the northern Barents Sea ecosystem: the Atlantic cod, capelin and polar cod. And, thus if local adaptations are important for population dynamics and responses to climate change, it may be necessary to revisit the management of fisheries in order to maintain intact spatial and genetic structure.  
  • The Aqua Genome project ( where the initial undertaking is to follow in the footsteps of the 1000 Genomes Project by sequencing 1000 salmon genomes and 1000 cod genomes from a variety of locations and populations to provide a deep catalog of genetic variation in these species. Thus, establish a foundation for bridging the genotype-phenotype gap for commercially important aquaculture traits, in addition to traits involved in evolutionary processes that are of significance for conservation and management of wild populations.
  • The FIE-project (“Fisheries induced evolution in Atlantic cod investigated by ancient and historic samples”) where we aim at quantifying the genomic potential for fisheries induced selection in cod, e.g. allowing a deeper understanding on the importance of fisheries induced evolution for fisheries management.
  • The ComparaCod-project (“Functional and comparative immunology of a teleost’s world without MHC II”) where we focus on the evolution of the immune system of Atlantic cod, the first species reported that has lost the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) II, one of the antigen presentation systems previously believed to be conserved among all jawed vertebrates.
  • The 100 teleost genomes project where we focus on the Atlantic cod and its close relatives within the order of Gadiformes in relation to their adaptation to different environments such as temperature/depth. 


2017- : Researcher, Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis (CEES), Department of Biosciences, University of Oslo, Norway.

2011-2018: Deputy Chair, Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis (CEES), Department of Biosciences, University of Oslo, Norway (resigned 04.09.2018).

2015-2017: Associate Professor II (10% position) at the Department of Natural Sciences, University of Agder (UiA), Kristiansand, Norway.

2014- : Leader-team member of Centre for Computational Inference in Evolutionary Life Science (CELS), University of Oslo.

2009-2017: Project Coordinator for the Cod Genome Project (e.g. Star et al. 2011, Tørresen et al. 2017) and other related marine evolutionary genomics projects at CEES, UiO, Norway.

2009- : Project Coordinator for the Norwegian Sequencing Centre (NSC;

2009-2012: Project Coordinator for Colloquium 2 “Bridging the gap between genomics and evolutionary biology” – a research theme lasting for three years – where the goal was to facilitate interactions between classical evolutionary thinking and the knowledge-base of molecular sciences (genomics).

2006-2009: Project Manager at the Centre of Integrative Genetics (CIGENE), NMBU, where my main responsibility was to coordinate the initiation of the International Collaboration to Sequence the Atlantic Salmon Genome (ICSASG).

PhD (Dr. scient) in fish physiology/molecular biology, from Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU).

M.Sc. (Cand. scient.) in fish biology/freshwater biology/ecology, University of Oslo (UiO).

Published May 26, 2011 9:54 PM - Last modified June 20, 2021 1:14 PM