Relaxed phylogenetics and dating with confidence plos biology

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I am particularly interested in integrating data from DNA sequences, ecology and fossils to better understand the origins and maintenance of mammalian biodiversity.

Other long-term interests include inferring how dinosaurs and their extinction influenced the evolution of birds and mammals and understanding evolutionarily stable niche discontinuities between species and their impact on evolvability.

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2003) and the spatial spread of rabies virus in raccoons in the USA (Biek et al. While there may be a fairly constant average rate of evolution over epidemiological timescales, there may be variation in evolutionary rates across lineages in the phylogenetic tree; failure to account for this variation may lead to incorrect inferences of evolutionary rates and dates.

We demonstrate these features using a large ( = 1,610) genome-scale dataset of Ebola virus sequences from the West African Ebola epidemic (Dudas et al.

2015) and compare the performance of the new method with other state-of-the-art methods.

This method is implemented as an open-source R package, Pathogen sequence data can provide important information about the timing and spread of infectious diseases, particularly for rapidly evolving pathogens such as RNA viruses.

Such pathogens have been dubbed ‘measurably evolving’ (Drummond et al.

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