Category Archives: population genetics

Bayesian Markov-chain Monte Carlo in population genetics

This is a guest post by Arun Sethuraman, a postdoctoral associate with Jody Hey, studying statistical models for divergence population genetics in the Department of Biology at Temple University. You can also find him on Twitter, and on his short story blog. Prompted by the great response … Continue reading

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Posted in methods, population genetics, software | Tagged , | 1 Comment

People behind the Science: Dr. Montgomery Slatkin

To honor his recent election to the National Academy of Sciences, we’re featuring Dr. Montgomery Slatkin of the University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Slatkin is known for his work in theoretical population genetics, in particular with regard to gene flow … Continue reading

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Spontaneous mutations—friend or foe?

The following is a cross-posting from the Stanford CEHG Blog by Ryo (Ryosuke) Kit, a graduate student in Hunter Fraser’s lab at Stanford University. Evolution has conflicting opinions about spontaneous mutations. Spontaneous mutations produce the genetic variation that drives evolution … Continue reading

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How A Troublesome Inheritance gets human genetics wrong

Probably since before the origin of modern Homo sapiens, we have known that people from other places—the next village over, the other side of the mountains, or some distant and unexplored land—were different from us. Some of those differences were … Continue reading

Posted in book review, genomics, population genetics | Tagged , , | 12 Comments

Calculating genetic differentiation with R

As molecular ecologists, it is often necessary and useful to calculate some measure of genetic differentiation. This is often accomplished with metrics such as Wright’s Fst an or an unbiased analog (e.g., Weir & Cockerham’s Fst; G’st etc.). In addition … Continue reading

Posted in population genetics, R, software | 12 Comments

Identifying and quantifying fitness effects across loci

The following guest post by Ethan Jewett is cross-posted from the is cross-posted from the CEHG blog at Stanford. Enjoy! The degree to which similarities and differences among species are the result of natural selection, rather than genetic drift, is … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, genomics, population genetics, theory | 1 Comment

People behind the Science: Dr. Charles Goodnight

This month, we touch on the always-exciting topic of multilevel selection in our Q&A feature with Dr. Charles Goodnight of the University of Vermont. In addition to his work on multi-level selection, Dr. Goodnight has also studied the effects of founder … Continue reading

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The broom of the system: Tracking soft selective sweeps in bacteria colonizing the gut

A growing body of population genetic evidence suggests that adaptive evolutionary change often proceeds via soft selective sweeps, in which beneficial mutations on multiple genetic backgrounds—and potentially at multiple loci—all increase in frequency, but none achieve fixation. This process has … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, microbiology, population genetics | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

What’s more isolating—environmental distance or … plain old distance?

We molecular ecologists spend a lot of time thinking about how we can differentiate the effects of natural selection acting on populations in different environments—local adaptation—from the simple isolating effects of, well, being in different places—isolation-by-distance. There’s a considerable literature … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, population genetics | 1 Comment

The “sieve” of selection—and of scientific discovery

One of the many fundamental insights to come out of the early days of population genetics in the first decades of the 20th Century was J.B.S. Haldane’s discovery that, when it comes to natural selection, population size matters. As Haldane … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, population genetics | 2 Comments