Meeting: Catalysis Meeting

Developing a Roadmap for The Future of Landscape Genomics

Date7-Mar-2013 ~ 9-Mar-2013
ProjectDeveloping a Roadmap for The Future of Landscape Genomics
SummaryA major goal of evolutionary biology is to understand the distribution of adaptive genetic variation among populations. Recent technological advances in genomics have furthered our understanding of the genotype-phenotype relationship, particularly in model organisms. In the last few years, high-throughput sequencing has made understanding the spatial distribution of adaptive genetic variation possible at the population level, even in non-model organisms. At the same time, advances in landscape genetics have allowed hypothesis testing of the influence of landscape characteristics on spatial genetic variation. An integration of landscape genetics and population genomics has allowed investigations of association of molecular markers with environmental characteristics, revealing putatively adaptive loci or gene regions. Such “landscape genomics” marker-association studies are currently limited, however, as considerable downstream work is necessary to identify the actual genes under selection and to demonstrate their functional relationship to phenotypic expression. Further, increasing genomic evidence suggests the importance of genomic architecture (e.g., transposons, gene duplications, gene arrangements) for gene expression, but the methods to analyze such genomic data in a spatial context are not fully developed. We propose a catalysis meeting in Landscape Genomics as a means to move forward in this regard. We use the term to refer to two landscapes: the genomic landscape in which genes are embedded and regulated, as well as the physical/environmental/habitat landscape in which organisms exist. We will gather an interdisciplinary team of genomicists, spatial statisticians and landscape ecologists/ geneticists to begin to tackle the challenge of truly integrating spatial genomic analysis with spatial landscape analysis.