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Abstract Detail

The Future of Herbarium Genetics and Genomics

Funk, Vicki [1], Mandel, Jennifer R [2], Dikow, Rebecca [3].

Collections in 21st Century Science: more important than ever.

The 19th Century ushered in a new age as naturalists undertook large-scale collecting expeditions leading to field observations and preserved specimens in the short term, and to major scientific advances in the long term. Notable among these were the founding of Physical Geography, Meteorology, Ecology (Humboldt), Biogeography (Hooker), and the theory of Evolution (Darwin, Wallace). In the 20th Century collections were central to paradigm shifts, including theories of Continental Drift (Eigenmann) and Phylogenetic Systematics (Hennig, Brundin). Past expeditions provided tissues for all the cladograms as the era of Phylogenetics took over biological thought. Will this tide of collections-based scientific advancement continue? In the first 15 years of the 21st Century we have seen tree-thinking pervade the life sciences, leading to the emergence of Evolutionary Ecology, Evolutionary Medicine, and new Food Safety methods, and collections data increasingly are used for climate change studies. Collections are a gold mine of information and are now leading the way to advances in three main areas: collections contain vast quantities of genomic data accessible through Next-Generation Sequencing techniques and phylogenomics, allowing us to address big evolutionary questions such as the frequency of genome duplication and its role in species diversification; Open access to specimen data, allowing us to model changes in diversity through time; and Estimating extinction risk and conservation priorities, by linking collections and climate data with phylogenies. Our ‘grand challenge’ is to determine where we want to be with collections-based research in 2050 and plan a strategy to get there.

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1 - Smithsonian Institution, Department of Botany, US National Herbarium, NMNH, MRC166, P.O. Box 37012, Washington DC, DC, 20013-7012, USA, 202-6330950
2 - University of Memphis, Department of Biological Sciences, Memphis, TN, 38152, USA
3 - Smithsonian Institution, Office of the Chief Information Officer and, National Museum of Natural History, 10th St & Constitution Ave NW, Washington , DC, 20560, United States

21st Century
Next generation sequencing
climate change.

Presentation Type: Symposium Presentation
Session: SY04, The Future of Herbarium Genetics and Genomics
Location: Chatham Ballroom - B/Savannah International Trade and Convention Center
Date: Monday, August 1st, 2016
Time: 1:45 PM
Number: SY04002
Abstract ID:136
Candidate for Awards:None

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