Category Archives: adaptation

C.L. Gloger’s favorite owl

Biologists love clines. We’ve been mentally masticating on clines for decades. Clines in body size. Clines in color. Clines in heart size! Clines that go in circles! Recognizing clinal patterns in phenotypes or genotypes is fun, but discovering the mechanisms behind … Continue reading

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Posted in adaptation, Molecular Ecology, the journal, population genetics | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Et tu, Brute? Black-legged ticks use genes co-opted from bacteria to fight bacterial infection

Horizontal gene transfer occurs when genes are passed between individuals by mechanisms other than reproduction. It is common in bacteria and occasionally happens between highly divergent groups (for example, monocot genes transferred to eudicots, fungal genes transferred to aphids, bacterial genes transferred … Continue reading

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The Evolution of Recombination

In a recent publication, Lesecque et al (2014). provide key evidence that fills in some of the blanks to an age old question – how do recombination hotspots evolve? Their analyses of major PRDM9 (a polymorphic zinc finger protein with … Continue reading

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Compensatory evolution: a possible mechanism of population divergence

After spending my graduate career using genetic data to reconstruct historical demographic events, one of the things that excite me the most about my postdoc work is the opportunity to use experimental methods to make evolution happen (insert mad scientist laugh … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, genomics, mutation, yeast | 2 Comments

Caught sweeping ‘cross the sea

  The salmon louse Lepeophtheirus salmonis is an ectoparasite linked to declines in wild salmonid populations as well as causing huge economic losses in salmon farms. Previous studies, using a variety of molecular markers, yielded conflicting results ranging from strong … Continue reading

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From cats to rats: two studies on domestication and tameness

Anyone who has ever read Charles Darwin is acutely aware of his fascination with domestication – particularly how he fancied fancy pigeons. Darwin drew on his domestication obsession while writing his book, The Variation of Animals and Plants under Domestication, … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, association genetics, domestication, genomics, methods, next generation sequencing, phylogenetics, quantitative genetics | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The forest resounding at rare intervals with the note of … reproductive isolation

Hybrid zones are often used as a window with which to gaze upon the evolutionary process (Barton and Hewitt 1989). With the advent of genomic tools, it is possible to detect the genomic signatures and the architecture underlying reproductive isolation. In … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, conservation, genomics, next generation sequencing, population genetics, speciation | 1 Comment

Different genetic paths lead to the same phenotypic destination

Male field crickets (Teleogryllus oceanicus) on the Hawaiian archipelago sing to attract mates using acoustic structures on their wings. While singing makes the ladies swoon, it also gives away the male cricket’s location, making it vulnerable to fatal attacks by … Continue reading

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Highlights from the 2014 Ecological Genomics Symposium

Ecological genomics is a rapidly growing field that aims to understand the genetic mechanisms responsible for the adaptive responses of organisms to their environment. I’m jumping into this area of research as a postdoc in the Kelly Lab at Louisiana … Continue reading

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Fishing for genetic signals of adaptation

One of the biggest promises of modern DNA sequencing methods is the ability to track the adaptation of living populations at a fine genetic scale, in essentially real time. It’s already been done in a number of experimental evolution systems: … Continue reading

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