Tree Thinking: An Introduction to Phylogenetic Biology

Tree Thinking: An Introduction to Phylogenetic Biology

by David Baum, Stacey Smith
     
 

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ISBN-10: 1936221160

ISBN-13: 9781936221165

Pub. Date: 07/01/2012

Publisher: Roberts and Company Publishers

Baum and Smith, both professors evolutionary biology and researchers in the field of systematics, present this highly accessible introduction to phylogenetics and its importance in modern biology. Ever since Darwin, the evolutionary histories of organisms have been portrayed in the form of branching trees or “phylogenies.”  However, the broad

Overview

Baum and Smith, both professors evolutionary biology and researchers in the field of systematics, present this highly accessible introduction to phylogenetics and its importance in modern biology. Ever since Darwin, the evolutionary histories of organisms have been portrayed in the form of branching trees or “phylogenies.”  However, the broad significance of the phylogenetic trees has come to be appreciated only quite recently. Phylogenetics has myriad applications in biology, from discovering the features present in ancestral organisms, to finding the sources of invasive species and infectious diseases, to identifying our closest living (and extinct) hominid relatives.  Taking a conceptual approach, Tree Thinking introduces readers to the interpretation of phylogenetic trees, how these trees can be reconstructed, and how they can be used to answer biological questions. Examples and vivid metaphors are incorporated throughout, and each chapter concludes with a set of problems, valuable for both students and teachers. Tree Thinking is must-have textbook for any student seeking a solid foundation in this fundamental area of evolutionary biology.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781936221165
Publisher:
Roberts and Company Publishers
Publication date:
07/01/2012
Edition description:
1st Edition
Pages:
496
Product dimensions:
7.20(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.30(d)

Table of Contents

1. Introduction to phylogenetic trees and their importance in modern biology

2. Tree thinking and its importance in the development of evolutionary thought

3. What a phylogenetic tree represents

4. Trait evolution

5. Relatedness and biological classification

6. Gene trees and species trees

7. Phylogenetic inference with parsimony

8. Phylogenetic inference with distance, maximum likelihood and Bayesian methods

9. Statistical tests of phylogenetic hypotheses

10. Using trees to reconstruct evolutionary history

Answers to chapter quizzes

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