Erika R. Moore
PhD student; Mandel Lab
University of Memphis, Tennessee, USA
I am currently studying the evolutionary history and species relationships within the genus Packera (Asteraceae) with a focus on phylogenomics. I hope that this research will also address broader questions that can be applicable to other fields of biology, such as: What role does polyploidy play in speciation events? Are there common causes of discordance in phylogenies? What morphological traits or environmental conditions lead to diversifications? Packera is a good model system to address these questions in complicated taxa given how some Packera species carry certain, distinguishable traits while others do not, some are widespread whereas others are endemic to restricted areas, and polyploidy, hybridization, and introgression are common within the genus.
I am also involved in conservation genetic work of the endangered sunflower, Helianthus verticillatus.
phylogenomics • biogeography • plant genetics • climate change • evolution • bioinformatics • character trait evolution • niche differentiation • conservation genetics
COMPOSITAE IN A CRATE
“Compositae in a Crate,” is an NSF funded self-guided outreach activity aimed at the 4th and 5th school grades. This crate of activities will contain three different modules focusing in different aspects of the sunflower family: biodiversity, morphology and society.