Category Archives: Seminars

The Individual in the Genomic Era

The grad students in this department (CEEB) are organizing a public seminar series this spring about how genomic technology is developed and applied to issues in human health.
The series is targeted towards undergraduates and the rest of the Eugene & surrounding community.  Bill Cresko will open the series on April 5 and give a brief tutorial on how we acquire genomic information) and will then go on to explore how this information has changed the way we view our world, the history of hominid evolution, and how we think about medical care.

Lee Silver, from Princeton University, will talk on May 3 specifically about Personal Genomics, personalized medicine and genetic testing.

Carlos Bustamante, from Stanford University, will close the series on May 23 by speaking about how genome variation data has been used to identify the evolution of different traits in domesticated animals (specifically dogs) and how we can use that same type of technology to map migration of humans over the past several millennia as well as explore the genetic basis to physical differences among humans.

We realize most of our readers won’t be able to attend, but we are planning on podcasting & videotaping the lecutres to post on the seminar website.  We’ll note on here when we update so keep your eyes peeled!

Putting morpho-phylogenetics in an Evo-Devo context

Posted by: Bryn Gaertner

Today we had a seminar speaker who talked about ways to map morphological data (the technique is a way to quantify shape, called Geometric Morphometrics) onto existing phylogenetic trees, and then inferring when vital morphological transitions happened (and specifically whether big shape transitions happened, or whether it’s gradual).  Brian Sidlauskas gave three specific examples of these strategies. Conceptually, his MO is to synthesize the fields of phylogenetics and morphometrics.  His argument is that each of them on their own are modestly informative, but in the words of G.G. Simpson, “we’re learning more and more about less and less.”  By synthesizing the two fields, we’re able to learn more about both than by studying either of them separately.

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