Joseph Felsenstein is Professor in the Departments of Genome Sciences and Biology and Adjunct Professor in the Departments of Computer Science and Statistics at the University of Washington in Seattle. He is best known for his work on phylogenetic inference, and is the author of Inferring Phylogenies, and principal author and distributor of the package of phylogenetic inference programs called PHYLIP, and is currently serving as the President of the Society for Molecular Biology & Evolution.

You can reach Joe at president.smbe@gmail.com

James McInerney is the principle investigator of the Bioinformatics and Molecular Evolution Laboratories at NUI Maynooth. He was one of the founding directors of the Irish Centre for High End Computing, an Associate Editor of Molecular Biology and Evolution, Biology Direct, and Journal of Experimental Zoology, and is currently serving as the Secretary for the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

You can reach James at secretary.smbe@gmail.com

Juliette de Meaux is interested in the molecular basis of Darwinian adaptation in natural plant systems. Her works combines the approaches of population, quantitative and molecular genetics to dissect the underpinning of adaptive changes. She completed her PhD at AgroParisTech, under the supervision of Prof. Claire Neema and studied the molecular basis of host-pathogen coevolution in natural populations of common bean. She then spent her Postdoc time in the lab of Prof. Tom Mitchell-Olds at the Max Planck Institute of Chemical Ecology in Jena and worked on the evolution of cis-regulatory DNA. Since 2005, she runs her own lab, first at the Max Planck Institute of Plant Breeding in Cologne and then at the University of Münster. In January 2015, she relocated her lab at the University of Cologne. She is currently serving as the Treasurer for the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

You can reach Juliette at treasurer.smbe@gmail.com

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About

The Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution is an international organization whose goals are to provide facilities for association and communication among molecular evolutionists and to further the goals of molecular evolution, as well as its practitioners and teachers. In order to accomplish these goals, the Society publishes two peer-reviewed journals, Molecular Biology and Evolution and Genome Biology and Evolution. The Society sponsors an annual meeting, as well as smaller satellite meetings or workshop on important, focused, and timely topics. It also confers honors and awards to students and researchers.

SMBE 2018

It is our pleasure to invite you to attend SMBE 2018 - the annual meeting of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. SMBE 2018 will be held from the 8th to the 12th of July in Yokohama, Japan. SMBE 2018 at Yokohama is to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the landmark paper by Kimura (1968) who proposed the neutral theory of molecular evolution. The meeting - including plenary talks, symposia presentations, the Walter Fitch symposium, and poster sessions - will showcase the latest research in genomics, population genetics, and molecular biology and evolution. 

More information can be found HERE

 



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Featured News and Updates

Where Will SMBE's Annual Meeting Be Held In 2021?

Proposals Now Being Accepted

SMBE is accepting proposals to host its International Meeting in 2021. The meeting is usually held in June or July and attracts up to 1500 scientists from throughout the world. For 2021, the Society will accept proposals from *outside* North America and Europe, because the next three meetings will be held in Yokohama, Japan (2018), Manchester, UK (2019), and Quebec, Canada (2020), respectively. The successful location will need to have a main lecture hall seating all attendees for plenary lectures, plus nearby smaller rooms for parallel sessions, and space for poster viewing. It will also need to be near housing, preferably with a wide variety of housing options.

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  • Monday, October 23, 2017
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SMBE Satellite Meeting in India This December

Plan to Attend!

SMBE satellite meeting on evolution of microbes in natural and experimental populations- synthesis and synergies.

Evolutionary research on microbes tends to adopt either one of two strategies; experimental evolution (EE) in the laboratory or studying variation within natural populations. Microbes are highly amenable to experimental evolution, and this approach has successfully addressed a broad range of questions, including adaptive dynamics, the repeatability of evolution, social interactions, and the distribution of fitness effects. 

Whole-genome sequencing of large samples from wild populations are similarly underpinning rapid advances in understanding how genome dynamics (such as the role of horizontal gene transfer and the pan-genome) underpin adaptation and ecological interactions. These two perspectives should, in principal, provide mutual reinforcement, as each addresses the potential weaknesses of the other; EE studies offer a controlled but artificial environment, whereas studies on natural populations are inherently more complex yet more realistic. This meeting will aim to bridge the gap between these approaches and build upon synergies and reciprocal benefits. The meeting will include a session on ‘Big Data’ analysis and microbial genomics supported by MRC-CLIMB (Cloud Infrastructure for Microbial bioinformatics).

Venue: The meeting will be held in Kaziranga National Park, Assam, India.

Dates: 14-16 December 2017.

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  • Friday, September 08, 2017
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2018 Conference - Call for Symposia

SMBE 2018 Call for Symposia

We're delighted to announce that the Society for Molecular Biology & Evolution is now accepting proposals for symposium topics for the 2018 Annual Meeting, taking place in Yokohama, Japan, from July 8th - 12th, 2018. Selection of proposals will be aimed at spanning the range of interests of SMBE members, including exciting new scientific developments, and representing the geographic and gender diversity of members.

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  • Friday, September 01, 2017
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Plan to Participate - SMBE 2018 in Yokohama, Japan

SMBE2018, Yokohama, Japan, website is live

http://smbe2018.jp/

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  • Friday, August 04, 2017
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SMBE satellite symposium on Molecular Evolution and Medicine

SMBE members are invited to attend a two-day symposium on Molecular Evolution and Medicine. SMBE members will receive a 50% discount on the registration fee if they use the TEMPLE50 discount code.

Location: Temple University, Philadelphia, USA
Program (Day 1): September 16, 2017: Molecular Evolution informs Medicine talks and posters (Temple sponsored)
Program (Day 2): September 17, 2017: Molecular Evolutionary Genetics (Nei Celebration; SMBE sponsored)

Program information is listed at http://igem.temple.edu/mem/program (>40 speakers)

To register, click on http://igem.temple.edu/mem/registration (use discount code TEMPLE50)

To present a contributed talk or poster, visit http://igem.temple.edu/mem/abstracts (deadline August 15)



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  • Friday, August 04, 2017
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Three Rivers Evolution Event 2017

The first annual Three Rivers Evolutionary Event (TREE) aims to bring together researchers from the areas surrounding Pittsburgh, PA in the common interest of discussing evolution.

TREE is intended to promote the study of evolution in the broadest sense, including observational and experimental studies under natural and controlled conditions. The research of attending members is expected to span viruses, microbes, plants, invertebrates and vertebrates, and include anthropology, epidemiology, developmental biology, ecology, zoology, theoretical, applied, urban ecology, paleontology, and many other specialized research areas.

Individuals from all backgrounds are welcome, and early-career researchers are encouraged to present.

Three Rivers Evolution Event 2017....September 9, 2017....an SMBE-sponsored regional meeting

http://sites.google.com/view/tree2017/s   @biotree2017   #tree2017


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  • Tuesday, July 18, 2017
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@OfficialSMBE Feed

MBE | Most Read

Molecular Biology and Evolution

Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Exploring the Adaptation Extremes of Human High Altitude Sickness and Fitness

Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Tibetans, Ethiopians, and Peruvians.

Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Wed, 04 Oct 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Tue, 03 Oct 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Thu, 28 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Wed, 27 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Tue, 26 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Tue, 26 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Species Tree Root Inference from Gene Duplication Events

Tue, 26 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Tue, 26 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Mon, 25 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Mon, 25 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Tue, 19 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

DNA Sequence Polymorphism Analysis of Large Data Sets

Mon, 18 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

1) modules for reading and analyzing data from genomic partitioning methods, such as RADseq or hybrid enrichment approaches, 2) faster methods scalable for high-throughput sequencing data, and 3) summary statistics for the analysis of multi-locus population genetics data. Furthermore, DnaSP 6 includes novel modules to perform single- and multi-locus coalescent simulations under a wide range of demographic scenarios. The DnaSP 6 program, with extensive documentation, is freely available at http://www.ub.edu/dnasp.">http://www.ub.edu/dnasp">http://www.ub.edu/dnasp.

Thu, 14 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Thu, 14 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Mon, 11 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

selective sweeps wherein large shifts in the allele frequencies occur at a few loci and evolution via small changes in the allele frequencies at many loci. Although the first process has been thoroughly investigated within the framework of population genetics, the latter is based on quantitative genetics and is much less understood. Here we summarize results from our recent theoretical studies of a quantitative genetic model of polygenic adaptation that makes explicit reference to population genetics to bridge the gap between the two frameworks. Our key results are that polygenic adaptation may be a rapid process and can proceed via subtle or dramatic changes in the allele frequency depending on the sizes of the phenotypic effects relative to a threshold value. We also discuss how the signals of polygenic selection may be detected in the genome. Although powerful methods are available to identify signatures of selective sweeps at loci controlling quantitative traits, the development of statistical tests for detecting small shifts of allele frequencies at quantitative trait loci is still in its infancy.

Sat, 09 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Tue, 05 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Hidden Genes Uncovered and the Rates versus Traits Paradox in Birds

Tue, 05 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

A Package for Phylogenetic Networks

Mon, 04 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Wed, 30 Aug 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Rapid Adaptation in a Polygenic Trait Proceeded Exclusively through Expression Differentiation

Wed, 30 Aug 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Thu, 24 Aug 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Wed, 05 Jul 2017 00:00:00 GMT

GBE | Most Read

Genome Biology & Evolution

Emergence and Spread of Epidemic Multidrug-Resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa

Wed, 29 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
Pseudomonas aeruginosa (P. aeruginosa) is one of the most common nosocomial pathogens worldwide. Although the emergence of multidrug-resistant (MDR) P. aeruginosa is a critical problem in medical practice, the key features involved in the emergence and spread of MDR P. aeruginosa remain unknown. This study utilized whole genome sequence (WGS) analyses to define the population structure of 185 P. aeruginosa clinical isolates from several countries. Of these 185 isolates, 136 were categorized into sequence type (ST) 235, one of the most common types worldwide. Phylogenetic analysis showed that these isolates fell within seven subclades. Each subclade harbors characteristic drug resistance genes and a characteristic genetic background confined to a geographic location, suggesting that clonal expansion following antibiotic exposure is the driving force in generating the population structure of MDR P. aeruginosa. WGS analyses also showed that the substitution rate was markedly higher in ST235 MDR P. aeruginosa than in other strains. Notably, almost all ST235 isolates harbor the specific type IV secretion system and very few or none harbor the CRISPR/CAS system. These findings may help explain the mechanism underlying the emergence and spread of ST235 P. aeruginosa as the predominant MDR lineage.

Horizontal Acquisition and Transcriptional Integration of Novel Genes in Mosquito-Associated Spiroplasma

Tue, 21 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
Genetic differentiation among symbiotic bacteria is important in shaping biodiversity. The genus Spiroplasma contains species occupying diverse niches and is a model system for symbiont evolution. Previous studies have established that two mosquito-associated species have diverged extensively in their carbohydrate metabolism genes despite having a close phylogenetic relationship. Notably, although the commensal Spiroplasma diminutum lacks identifiable pathogenicity factors, the pathogenic Spiroplasma taiwanense was found to have acquired a virulence factor glpO and its associated genes through horizontal transfer. However, it is unclear if these acquired genes have been integrated into the regulatory network. In this study, we inferred the gene content evolution in these bacteria, as well as examined their transcriptomes in response to glucose availability. The results indicated that both species have many more gene acquisitions from the Mycoides-Entomoplasmataceae clade, which contains several important pathogens of ruminants, than previously thought. Moreover, several acquired genes have higher expression levels than the vertically inherited homologs, indicating possible functional replacement. Finally, the virulence factor and its functionally linked genes in S. taiwanense were up-regulated in response to glucose starvation, suggesting that these acquired genes are under expression regulation and the pathogenicity may be a stress response. In summary, although differential gene losses are a major process for symbiont divergence, gene gains are critical in counteracting genome degradation and driving diversification among facultative symbionts.

The Diversity of REcent and Ancient huMan (DREAM): A New Microarray for Genetic Anthropology and Genealogy, Forensics, and Personalized Medicine

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
The human population displays wide variety in demographic history, ancestry, content of DNA derived from hominins or ancient populations, adaptation, traits, copy number variation, drug response, and more. These polymorphisms are of broad interest to population geneticists, forensics investigators, and medical professionals. Historically, much of that knowledge was gained from population survey projects. Although many commercial arrays exist for genome-wide single-nucleotide polymorphism genotyping, their design specifications are limited and they do not allow a full exploration of biodiversity. We thereby aimed to design the Diversity of REcent and Ancient huMan (DREAM)—an all-inclusive microarray that would allow both identification of known associations and exploration of standing questions in genetic anthropology, forensics, and personalized medicine. DREAM includes probes to interrogate ancestry informative markers obtained from over 450 human populations, over 200 ancient genomes, and 10 archaic hominins. DREAM can identify 94% and 61% of all known Y and mitochondrial haplogroups, respectively, and was vetted to avoid interrogation of clinically relevant markers. To demonstrate its capabilities, we compared its FST distributions with those of the 1000 Genomes Project and commercial arrays. Although all arrays yielded similarly shaped (inverse J) FST distributions, DREAM’s autosomal and X-chromosomal distributions had the highest mean FST, attesting to its ability to discern subpopulations. DREAM performances are further illustrated in biogeographical, identical by descent, and copy number variation analyses. In summary, with approximately 800,000 markers spanning nearly 2,000 genes, DREAM is a useful tool for genetic anthropology, forensic, and personalized medicine studies.

Structure-Related Differences between Cytochrome Oxidase I Proteins in a Stable Heteroplasmic Mitochondrial System

Tue, 14 Nov 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
Many bivalve species have two types of mitochondrial DNA passed independently through the female line (F genome) and male line (M genome). Here we study the cytochrome oxidase I protein in such bivalve species and provide evidence for differences between the F and M proteins in amino acid property values, particularly relating to hydrophobicity and helicity. The magnitude of these differences varies between different regions of the protein and the change from the ancestor is most marked in the M protein. The observed changes occur in parallel and in the same direction in the different species studied. Two possible causes are considered, first relaxation of purifying selection with drift and second positive selection. These may operate in different ways in different regions of the protein. Many different amino acid substitutions contribute in a small way to the observed variation, but substitutions involving alanine and serine have a quantitatively large effect. Some of these substitutions are potential targets for phosphorylation and some are close to residues of functional importance in the catalytic mechanism. We propose that the observed changes in the F and M proteins might contribute to functional differences between them relating to ATP production and mitochondrial membrane potential with implications for sperm function.

The Novel Evolution of the Sperm Whale Genome

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
The sperm whale, made famous by Moby Dick, is one of the most fascinating of all ocean-dwelling species given their unique life history, novel physiological adaptations to hunting squid at extreme ocean depths, and their position as one of the earliest branching toothed whales (Odontoceti). We assembled the sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) genome and resequenced individuals from multiple ocean basins to identify new candidate genes for adaptation to an aquatic environment and infer demographic history. Genes crucial for skin integrity appeared to be particularly important in both the sperm whale and other cetaceans. We also find sperm whales experienced a steep population decline during the early Pleistocene epoch. These genomic data add new comparative insight into the evolution of whales.