Note: Our course instructors are subject to change.
Fred W. Allendorf
Fred W. Allendorf is a Regents Professor Emeritus at the University of Montana. His primary research interests are conservation and population genetics. His research career has been driven by his belief that some of the most interesting basic scientific questions are also the most important applied questions for conservation. He has published over 200 articles on the population genetics and conservation of fish, amphibians, mammals, invertebrates, and plants. He has taught conservation genetics workshops in the US, Australia, South Africa, Costa Rica, and New Zealand.
Eric C. Anderson
Eric is a research molecular geneticist at the Southwest Fisheries Science Center, Santa Cruz, CA, and a research associate in the Institute of Marine Sciences at University of California, Santa Cruz.
Eric develops and applies statistical and computational methods for inference from population genetic data. Most methods are directly relevant to management and conservation. His work has focused on Monte Carlo methods for efficient calculation of likelihoods from genetic models, Bayesian methods, computations on the coalescent process, application of hidden Markov models and graphical models to genetics, and inference in finite mixture models. He has recently been involved in developing methods for multigenerational pedigree inference using SNPs, deriving and using multiallelic "microhaplotype" marker data from next generation sequencing of amplicons, and large-scale pairwise relationship inference for close-kin mark-recapture.
Ellie is a 5th year PhD Candidate in the Petrov and Hadly labs at Stanford University. She primarily focuses on the genomics of large carnivores and how we can improve genomic resources and build low-impact monitoring techniques for these species. She is experienced in both short and long read genome assembly methods across diverse taxa and whole-genome resequencing methods. She is particularly interested in the dynamics of small populations and how common population genetic estimates such as heterozygosity reflect population health, adaptive potential, and extinction risk.
Brenna is a landscape and molecular ecologist focused on conserving biodiversity in a period of rapid global change. Her research integrates environmental, genomic, and phenotypic data sets to assess adaptive capacity and inform the management of threatened species. Her current research areas include integrating genomic data into listing frameworks under the U.S. Endangered Species Act, and conservation genomics of imperiled amphibians. She completed her MSc at Western Washington University, her PhD at Duke University, and a David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellowship at Colorado State University. She is currently an Endangered Species Biologist with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service in the Branch of Species Status Assessment Science Support.
W. Chris Funk
The Funk Lab strives to understand the evolutionary and ecological mechanisms that generate and maintain biodiversity, and how rapid global environmental change affects these processes. We address questions by integrating population genomics, quantitative field methods, controlled experiments, and computational analysis in a variety of taxonomic groups (amphibians, fish, stream insects, birds, mammals, reptiles, and terrestrial insects). Much of our research focuses on freshwater habitats, such as streams, rivers, ponds, wetlands, and lakes.
In addition to my interest in basic questions in evolution and ecology, an important part of my research program applies population genetic theory and next-generation sequencing data to address conservation questions. Population genetics and genomics are invaluable in conservation and management for the delineation of conservation units, determining patterns of genetic connectivity across landscapes, and assessing the status and viability of threatened species. A major focus of my research program is the application of population genetics and genomics to address critical questions for biodiversity conservation.
Paul A. Hohenlohe is an associate professor at the University of Idaho in the Department of Biological Sciences and the Institute for Bioinformatics and Evolutionary Studies. Research in his group focuses on population genetics and genomics in a wide range of systems with applications to conservation. He has been involved in developing analysis methods and applications for RAD sequencing, and ongoing research also uses techniques such as sequence capture and whole-genome sequencing. Current projects include the genomics of disease resistance in Tasmanian devils and island foxes; admixture and adaptation in pygmy rabbits, red wolves, and tamarisk leaf beetles; and adaptive capacity and local adaptation in scrub jays, redband trout, and sagebrush.
Will is a recent Ecology PhD graduate from UC Davis. His research focuses on the genetics of migration in Monarch Butterflies and other species and on improving and developing methods for estimating the genetic architecture of quantitative traits in order to better predict the demographic impacts of ecological changes on populations. He also has an interest in developing user-friendly software for population genetics in order to make the genetic toolkit more easily accessible for ecologists and conservationists.
Marty Kardos is a research molecular geneticist with the National Marine Fisheries Service at the Northwest Fisheries Science Center in Seattle. He uses empirical and simulation-based approaches to understand evolution and population dynamics in the wild. Kardos' current work focuses on using genomic analyses of marine mammals and marine and anadromous fishes, with the ultimate goal of informing resource management and conservation. He is particularly interested in using genomic approaches to understand inbreeding depression, historical population size, hybridization, and its fitness consequences, and the intersection of adaptive potential and population dynamics.
Gordon Luikart is a professor at the Flathead Lake Biological Station (University of Montana). He was a Research Scientist with the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) at the Joseph Fourier University in Grenoble, France, and a Professor at the University of Porto (and CIBIO) Portugal. His research focuses on the development and application of molecular and computational approaches to understand the genetic basis of fitness, adaptation, connectivity, the spread of invasive species/pathogens, and the conservation of wild and domestic animals. He co-authored the book entitled Conservation and the Genomics of Populations, with Fred Allendorf, Chris Funk, Sally Aitken, and Margaret Byrne - https://global.oup.com/academic/product/conservation-and-the-genomics-of-populations-9780198856573?q=allendorf&lang=en&cc=us
Mike Miller is an assistant professor of population/quantitative genetics/genomics at the University of California, Davis. His research interests are in animal genetics and genomics, conservation and ecological genomics, bioinformatics technology development, and salmonid fishes. He is a co-inventor of RADs and related novel molecular technologies. Mike led the sequencing of the rainbow trout genome.
Angel G. Rivera-Colón is a PhD candidate in Julian Catchen’s lab at the Department of Evolution, Ecology, and Behavior at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. His research focuses on comparative and population genomics in Antarctic notothenioid fish, particularly regarding the characterization of the genetic changes underlying polar-to-temperate transition in Antarctic white-blooded icefish. In addition to his research on icefish, he has worked on the development and implementation of RADseq-related bioinformatic software, including Stacks and RADinitio.
Rena Schweizer is a broadly-trained wildlife conservation geneticist. In her research, Rena integrates genomics, population genetics, bioinformatics, and physiology to evaluate the conservation status of wildlife populations and study evolution. During previous work, Rena has implemented a variety of approaches to understand genetic substructure and natural selection in gray wolves, high-altitude adaptation and ecophysiology in deer mice, and thermal acclimation in black-capped chickadees. Rena is currently a Research Entomologist with the USDA Agricultural Research Service Pollinating Insects Research Unit, where she is working on conservation genomics of U.S. native bees.
Dr. Sethuraman is an evolutionary computational biologist who develops new statistical methods to study how genomes evolve in structured populations during divergence and speciation in response to natural selection and demography. Applications of his work include conservation, deciphering human evolutionary history, agriculture, and biological control. Outside the lab, he loves CrossFit and spoiling his two cats, Hobbes and Pepper.
Gregg is a postdoctoral researcher in the Division of Biological Sciences at the University of Montana in Jeff Good's lab. He got his PhD in Evolutionary Biology and Bioinformatics at Indiana University. His main research interests center around how changes in DNA sequences play a role in adaptation. He uses genomics and phylogenetics to understand the patterns and drivers of molecular evolution in a comparative framework, and he works through some of the problems in these analyses that come with vast amounts of genomic data. To this end, he has worked on modeling mutation rate variation in mammals, detecting convergent evolution using genomic data, and analyzing gene families in a number of species, including leading the comparative portion of the i5K project. He develops software to analyze biological data, including GRAMPA which aids in the study of polyploidy by using gene tree topologies, and Referee which annotates genome assemblies with quality scores, and he contributed to the latest version of CAFE to account for error in gene family analysis.
Robin Waples is a senior scientist at the Northwest Fisheries Science Center of the National Marine Fisheries Service in Seattle. Robin led the Conservation Biology Division for a decade, conducting comprehensive reviews of the status of Pacific salmonids under the US federal Endangered Species Act. Research interests include: adapting standard population genetics theory so that it can be applied to real-world problems; combining diverse types of information (molecular genetics; life history; ecology) to characterize hierarchical levels of diversity in Pacific salmon; assessing the viability of complex conservation units that include multiple independent populations and diverse ecotypes; methods for analyzing gene flow and population structure; evolutionary consequences of anthropogenic changes to natural habitats; patterns of reproductive success across space and time; effects of age structure on calculation and estimation of effective population size.