Thursday 15 February 2018

BioMaths Colloquium - 16/02/2018

BioMaths Colloquium Series - 2017/18

16 February 2018 - 3pm Maths Seminar Room

(room 224 Talbot Building 2nd floor)

Mathematical analysis and simulation in ecology and evolution: A new model of isolation-by-distance that overcomes longstanding technical limitations

Dr Yevhen Suprunenko

(Institute of Integrative BiologyUniversity of Liverpool, UK) 

Our BioMaths Colloquium Series resumes for the winter term with a seminar by Dr Yevhen Suprunenko, from the Institute of Integrative Biology at University of Liverpool (UK). Yevhen started as a theoretical physicist and moved on to theoretical ecology, with the aim to use mathematical and physical methods to study the complex dynamics of living organisms - especially aspects concerning the role of spatially explicit dynamics, stochasticity, and temporal processes.

In population genetics, models of isolation-by-distance (IBD) are crucial for understanding the role of evolutionary processes in the generation and maintenance of population genetic structure. However, despite the great importance and ubiquity of IBD in nature, a realistic mathematically tractable model is still missing due to the formidable technical difficulty of modelling nonlinear stochastic population dynamics. Instead, existing models of IBD use oversimplified and unrealistic approximations where spatial and/or temporal complexity is ignored, or only a limited number of evolutionary processes can be considered, e.g. selection and local density-dependent population regulation pose a long-standing problem. Here, we present a model of IBD which overcomes these technical limitations. The model takes into account explicit continuous spatial stochastic dynamics, selection, local density-dependent population regulation, limited spatial dispersal, genetic drift, mutation. We present approximate analytical solutions, asymptotically exact in a biologically relevant limit, for IBD patterns for neutral and non-neutral markers using arbitrary interaction kernels. Simulations show good agreement with our analytical predictions.

The discussions will continue over biscuits and tea/coffee after the seminar. 
Hope to see many of you!

For the list of forthcoming seminars, see here

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