Congratulations to the inaugural winners of the SMBE Allan Wilson Junior Award for Independent Research, SMBE Margaret Dayhoff Mid-Career Award, SMBE Community Service Award and the SMBE Motoo Kimura Lifetime Contribution Award!!


2016 SMBE Allan Wilson Junior Award for Independent Research

Joanna Kelley


Dr. Joanna Kelley is an Assistant Professor in the School of Biological Sciences at Washington State University. She runs an evolutionary genomics laboratory that focuses on high-throughput genome    sequencing and computational approaches to analyzing big data in genomics. Her research focuses on  understanding the genomic basis for adaptation to extreme environments. She received her B.A. in  mathematics and biology with honors from Brown University, working with Johanna Schmitt. She earned  her Ph.D. in Genome Sciences from the University of Washington under Willie Swanson. As a postdoctoral  researcher at the University of Chicago in Human Genetics with Molly Przeworski, she received a National Institutes of Health Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award. Dr. Kelley was also a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Genetics at Stanford University with Carlos Bustamante.



2016 SMBE Margaret Dayhoff Mid-Career Award
Stephen I. Wright  

Stephen I. Wright is an Associate Professor and Canada Research Chair in Population Genomics at the University of Toronto. He completed an M.Sc. at McGill University with Dan Schoen and Thomas Bureau, his PhD with Deborah Charlesworth at the University of Edinburgh, and a postdoctoral fellowship with Brandon Gaut at the University of California Irvine.  His research interests focus on plant population and e Evolutionary genomics, with a particular interest in the genomic consequences of mating system evolution, quantification of genome-wide positive and negative selection, and the evolution of transposable elements.


2016 SMBE Community Service Award
Bill Martin

As a scientist, Bill Martin has furthered our understanding of life's early history with contributions to the  study of physiology, gene transfer and endosymbiosis in microbial evolution. He has served SMBE for well  over a decade. As the Editor-in-Chief of MBE 2003-2008, he fostered growth of the journal and the society  while helping to usher SMBE into the age of electronic publishing. In 2009 he founded SMBE’s second journal, Genome Biology and Evolution, which was the first society-owned, open-access journal in the  biological sciences.  He has served as the Editor-in-Chief of GBE since its inception, overseeing the journal’s  contribution to the society and its benefit to the field. Bill is a fellow in the American Academy for  Microbiology, a member of EMBO, and has been Chair of the Institute of Molecular Evolution at the University of Dusseldorf since 1999.  


2016 SMBE Motoo Kimura Lifetime Contribution Award
Nancy Moran

Nancy Moran’s long-term interests are in the evolution of biological complexity, such as that apparent in c complex life histories, in intimate interactions among species and in species-diversity of clades and communities. Her research has focused extensively on symbiosis, particularly between multicellular hosts and microbes.  In her storied career, she has demonstrated ancient coevolution between aphids and their plant hosts, and has characterized mutualistic symbiotic interactions between aphids and Buchnera bacteria and between other insect and symbiont clades. She found that these mutualisms are ancient, dating to the origins of major insect clades, and that the long term vertical transmission of the bacterial symbionts has caused extreme genome degradation and shrinkage. Her ongoing projects include phylogenetic and genomic studies of previously unstudied insect symbioses, experiments on gene expression of symbionts within hosts, computational reconstruction of the content and arrangement of genes in bacterial ancestors, and experimental investigations of coevolved gut communities within social bees. She has previously been awarded a MacArthur Fellowship and the International Prize for Biology, and has been a member of that National Academy of the Sciences since 2004. She is currently the Leslie Surginer Endowed Professor in the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of Texas, Austin. 

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Comparison of Fused and Segregated Globin Gene Clusters

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Pan troglodytes (P. t.) troglodytes and P. t. verus.

Command-Line Toolkits for Manipulating Sequences, Alignments, and Phylogenetic Trees

2017-02-25

2017-02-21

Chaetoceros, Cyclotella, Discostella, or Nitzschia. It has been speculated that serial replacement of diatom-derived chloroplasts by other diatoms has caused this diversity of chloroplasts. Although previous work suggested that the endosymbionts of Nitzschia origin might not be monophyletic, this has not been seriously investigated. To infer the number of replacements of diatom-derived chloroplasts in dinotoms, we analyzed the phylogenetic affinities of 14 species of dinotoms based on the endosymbiotic rbcL gene and SSU rDNA, and the host SSU rDNA. Resultant phylogenetic trees revealed that six species of Nitzschia were taken up by eight marine dinoflagellate species. Our phylogenies also indicate that four separate diatom species belonging to three genera were incorporated into the five freshwater dinotoms. Particular attention was paid to two crucially closely related species, Durinskia capensis and a novel species, D. kwazulunatalensis, because they possess distantly related Nitzschia species. This study clarified that any of a total of at least 11 diatom species in five genera are employed as an endosymbiont by 14 dinotoms, which infers a more frequent replacement of endosymbionts in the world of dinotoms than previously envisaged.

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GBE | Most Read

Genome Biology & Evolution

Single-Copy Genes as Molecular Markers for Phylogenomic Studies in Seed Plants

2017-05-01

<span class="paragraphSection">Phylogenetic relationships among seed plant taxa, especially within the gymnosperms, remain contested. In contrast to angiosperms, for which several genomic, transcriptomic and phylogenetic resources are available, there are few, if any, molecular markers that allow broad comparisons among gymnosperm species. With few gymnosperm genomes available, recently obtained transcriptomes in gymnosperms are a great addition to identifying single-copy gene families as molecular markers for phylogenomic analysis in seed plants. Taking advantage of an increasing number of available genomes and transcriptomes, we identified single-copy genes in a broad collection of seed plants and used these to infer phylogenetic relationships between major seed plant taxa. This study aims at extending the current phylogenetic toolkit for seed plants, assessing its ability for resolving seed plant phylogeny, and discussing potential factors affecting phylogenetic reconstruction. In total, we identified 3,072 single-copy genes in 31 gymnosperms and 2,156 single-copy genes in 34 angiosperms. All studied seed plants shared 1,469 single-copy genes, which are generally involved in functions like DNA metabolism, cell cycle, and photosynthesis. A selected set of 106 single-copy genes provided good resolution for the seed plant phylogeny except for gnetophytes. Although some of our analyses support a sister relationship between gnetophytes and other gymnosperms, phylogenetic trees from concatenated alignments without 3rd codon positions and amino acid alignments under the CAT + GTR model, support gnetophytes as a sister group to Pinaceae. Our phylogenomic analyses demonstrate that, in general, single-copy genes can uncover both recent and deep divergences of seed plant phylogeny.</span>