Category Archives: adaptation

From crocodiles to coconuts

The first plant trypanosomatids were discovered in plant tissues over 100 years ago, but we know very little about their biology, life cycle or how they have adapted to life inside plants. Jaskowska et al. (2015) provide a review of … Continue reading

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Posted in adaptation, Coevolution, evolution, genomics, natural history | Leave a comment

Species and sensibility

Pante et al. (2014) performed a literature review of marine population connectivity in order to illustrate the biased estimates of connectivity which can result from the failure to recognize an evolutionary-relevant unit, such as a species. When exploring the connectivity … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, community ecology, conservation, DNA barcoding, natural history, next generation sequencing, phylogenetics, population genetics, speciation, theory | 2 Comments

Not everyone likes it hot … winter or not

On this Boxing Day, many of us may be bracing against winter storms.  For those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, we might all be dreaming of summer weather (including those of us who think a Southern Californian version of winter downright … Continue reading

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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

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

Posted in adaptation, genomics, horizontal gene transfer, microbiology | Leave a comment

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

Posted in adaptation, genomics, mutation, next generation sequencing | Leave a comment

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