Dr Gili Greenbaum from Stanford University
Population Genetics and Eco-Evolutionary Dynamics in Structured Populations
Population structure is ubiquitous in natural populations. Studying this structure and the processes that shape it is key to understanding ecology and is essential is crucial for conservation efforts. However, in many real-world cases, gene flow is complex, with non-trivial configuration of connectivity between subpopulations, and population structure occurs at multiple hierarchical levels. In this work, I will describe how complex population structure can be modeled and investigated using networks and hierarchies. I will also present two cases where mathematical modeling of structured populations provides important insights: (1) Eco-evolutionary dynamics of gene flow and disease transmission between populations, with implications for studying the interaction between Neanderthals and modern humans, and (2) How CRISPR/Cas9 gene drive applications for control of invasive species can be designed to limit spillovers to non-target populations and avoid ecological catastrophes.