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Genetics and the causes of evolution: 150 years of progress since Darwin









The Royal Society, London, 6-9 Carlton House Terrace, London, SW1Y 5AG


Organised by Professor Brian Charlesworth FRS and Dr Mike Bonsall.

A joint Royal Society and Genetics Society meeting.

In Darwin's day, a lack of understanding of inheritance meant that the theory of evolution was incomplete. This crucial gap has been filled by over a century of research in genetics. This meeting shows how genetics contributes to our knowledge of the mechanisms of evolutionary change across a wide range of biological systems, from viruses to humans.

The meeting was followed by the Genetics Society Mendel Lecture by Professor Wen-Hsiung Li.

Audio recordings of all the presentations and discussions are available below.

Event organisers

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Schedule of talks

Session 1

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Divergence, Demography and Gene Loss along the Human Lineage

Nayoyuki Takahata, Graduate University for Advanced Studies, Japan

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Molecular adaptations to novel environments in humans

Anna Di Rienzo, University of Chicago, USA

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Selection on quantitative traits in the wild

Josephine Pemberton

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Stephen Cox, Royal Society, and Brian Charlesworth, University of Edinburgh

What Darwin did and didn’t know: the causes of evolutionary change

Hopi Hoeskstra, Harvard University, USA

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Session 2

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Experimental evolution of viruses

Holly Wichman, University of Idaho, USA

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Genetic basis of adaptation and speciation in Mimulus

John Willis, Duke University, USA

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Natural selection and the genetics of adaptation in stickleback

Dolph Schluter, University of British Columbia, Canada

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Social evolution, pathogen virulence, and the "tragedy of the commons"

Ben Kerr et al, University of Washington, USA

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The Biogeography of Speciation

Jerry Coyne, University of Chicago, USA

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Session 3

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Origin and evolution of HIV

Paul M. Sharp, University of Edinburgh, UK

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Parasites: pathogenesis, virulence and infective dose

Steven Frank, University of California Irvine

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Population genetics of cattle domestication

Professor Dan Bradley, Trinity College, Dublin

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Variation under domestication in plants - 1859 and today

Anthony Brown, CSIRO Plant Industry, Australia

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Session 4

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Detecting positive selection within genomes: troubles with biased gene conversion

Laurent Duret et al, CNRS, Université Lyon 1, France

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Evolutionary Genetics and Ecology of Polymorphic Sexual Systems in Flowering Plants

Spencer Barrett et al, University of Toronto, Canada

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Genetic linkage and natural selection

Nick Barton, Institute of Science and Technology (IST) Austria

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Mechanisms of adaptation in response to sexual selection and sexual conflict

Tracey Chapman, University of East Anglia, UK

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Mendel Lecture - Evolution of gene expression

Wen-Hsiung Li, University of Chicago, USA

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Genetics and the causes of evolution: 150 years of progress since Darwin The Royal Society, London 6-9 Carlton House Terrace London SW1Y 5AG UK
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