2019-2020

Mutualism in the Microbiome Era

Ecology/Evolutionary Biology

THIS PROJECT IS FOR SPRING 2020.

I am working on a book that explores how current ideas about mutualism ecology and evolution can enlighten microbiome science, and to what extent host-associated microbiomes require rethinking mutualism theory. Planned chapters for the book include topics such as “cheating” in mutualisms, coevolution, macroevolution, and engineering microbiomes for medicine, agriculture, or conservation. Research partners would work with me to create data visualizations or analyses for the book, using publicly available data from the Human Microbiome Project, the Earth Microbiome Project, or other sources. The students would also help with formatting and editing book chapters. Some experience using the statistical computing language R is preferred, although students with knowledge of other programming languages (e.g., Python) or a strong interest in learning to code are also encouraged to apply. Through the research partnership, the students will gain bioinformatic and data science skills, as well as an improved understanding of microbial ecology and evolution.