Fall 2020 DPCB

Message from the Chair

David Blackburn, Chair.DPCB@sicb.org

We are hoping for a strong presence of the Division of Phylogenetic and Comparative Biology at our next annual meeting, which will be all virtual for the first time ever. Will it be completely the same? Definitely not. Will it still be engaging and provide ways to connect with students and colleagues? Yes! By spreading the annual conference over several weeks, SICB is hoping to prevent “burnout by Zoom” and more opportunities for connecting with one another during these uncertain times.

We are looking forward to this year’s David and Marvalee Wake Award competition for best student presentation. We received 18 submissions to the competition for the Wake Award Best Student Talk. After removing the names and institutions of each abstract, a team from our division’s leadership evaluated all of the submissions. We have selected eight excellent submissions that span a range of topics exploring genes, genomes, and phenotypes in organisms in cephalopods, amphipods, fishes, frogs, and more. Please tune in to what promises to be among on our division’s best ever student talk competitions!

This coming year, we will see a changing of the guard in our divisional leadership. Dr. Samantha Price of Clemson University will serve as Chair-Elect and Dr. Ryan Felice of University College London will serve as Secretary-Elect. I am grateful to both of them for their willingness to serve our division. Dr. Leigha Lynch of Midwestern University (Glendale, Arizona) will become our division’s program officer, replacing Dr. Todd Oakley who has served our division for the past two terms in this role. Please join me in thanking Todd for his many years of service in this important role in our division!

DPCB Programming for SICB 2021

Eurasian wolf
Eurasian wolf (Photo credit: Wikimedia Images)

At this year’s SICB virtual conference, we will be hosting a broad range of talks and poster sessions, covering topics from evolutionary ecology to molecular evolution and phylogeography.

Be sure to support DPCB students giving talks in the Wake Award competition (held this year on January 3), and check out the symposia sponsored by DPCB:

  • Genomic perspectives in comparative physiology of mollusks: Integration across disciplines
  • An evolutionary tail: Evo-devo, structure, and function of post-anal appendages
  • Biology’s best friend: Bridging disciplinary gaps to advance canine science
  • Manakin genomics: Comparative studies of evolution and behavior in a unique clade of birds