NWFSC Monster Seminar Jam: Devon Pearse, Ph.D.
This seminar is part of the Northwest Fisheries Science Center's Monster Seminar Jam series.
Devon Pearse, Ph.D. (NOAA's Southwest Fisheries Science Center/University of California, Santa Cruz) is presenting a talk, "Fishing for answers in the age of genomics."
Research on the evolutionary genomic characteristics of natural populations has made spectacular progress in the past few years, largely due to the advances in sequencing technology and analysis. However, it is far from clear how our understanding of adaptive genomic variation can or should inform wildlife conservation practice. Before this occurs, consideration must be given to the biological realities of dynamic natural habitats and the implications of using specific genomic targets to set conservation priorities. In this talk I will present examples of genomic variants associated with specific phenotypes in salmonids and other taxa to demonstrate the complex ways in which genomic variation and the environment interact to affect phenotypic variation and individual fitness and to highlight the key issues and limitations for the incorporation of adaptive genomic variation in conservation practice.
Dr. Devon Pearse is a Research Geneticist in the Fisheries Ecology Division of the NOAA Fisheries' Southwest Fisheries Science Center, and adjunct professor at the University of California in Santa Cruz, CA. He works as part of a cooperative group of scientists focused on using genetic data to understand the evolutionary processes that affect individuals and populations. This work provides basic insights and informs science policy. Devon’s career has spanned a remarkable transition in the field of genetics; he earned his PhD in Genetics from the University of Georgia in Athens, GA where he dabbled in allozymes and used just three microsatellite loci to conduct parentage analysis in freshwater turtles, while projects he is involved in today use whole genome re-sequencing data, providing incredible resolution to identify adaptive genomic variation.
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