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Double-stranded (ds) DNA viruses are often described as evolving through long-term codivergent associations with their hosts, a pattern that is expected to be associated with low rates of nucleotide substitution. However, the hypothesis of codivergence between dsDNA viruses and their hosts has rarely been rigorously tested, even though the vast majority of(More)
BACKGROUND We evaluate the process by which the Americas were originally colonized and propose a three-stage model that integrates current genetic, archaeological, geological, and paleoecological data. Specifically, we analyze mitochondrial and nuclear genetic data by using complementary coalescent models of demographic history and incorporating non-genetic(More)
The evolution of languages provides a unique opportunity to study human population history. The origin of Semitic and the nature of dispersals by Semitic-speaking populations are of great importance to our understanding of the ancient history of the Middle East and Horn of Africa. Semitic populations are associated with the oldest written languages and(More)
Shigella are human-adapted Escherichia coli that have gained the ability to invade the human gut mucosa and cause dysentery(1,2), spreading efficiently via low-dose fecal-oral transmission(3,4). Historically, S. sonnei has been predominantly responsible for dysentery in developed countries but is now emerging as a problem in the developing world, seeming to(More)
BACKGROUND We re-assess support for our three stage model for the peopling of the Americas in light of a recent report that identified nine non-Native American mitochondrial genome sequences that should not have been included in our initial analysis. Removal of these sequences results in the elimination of an early (i.e. approximately 40,000 years ago)(More)
Bazin et al. (Reports, 28 April, 2006, p. 570) found no relationship between mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) diversity and population size when comparing across large groups of animals. We show empirically that species with smaller populations, as represented by eutherian mammals, exhibit a positive correlation between mtDNA and allozyme variation, suggesting(More)
Clothing use is an important modern behavior that contributed to the successful expansion of humans into higher latitudes and cold climates. Previous research suggests that clothing use originated anywhere between 40,000 and 3 Ma, though there is little direct archaeological, fossil, or genetic evidence to support more specific estimates. Since clothing(More)
There has been an explosion in the discovery of 'insect-specific' flaviviruses and/or their related sequences in natural mosquito populations. Herein we review all 'insect-specific' flavivirus sequences currently available and conduct phylogenetic analyses of both the 'insect-specific' flaviviruses and available sequences of the entire genus Flavivirus. We(More)
Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M.tb), the cause of tuberculosis (TB), is estimated to infect a new host every second. While analyses of genetic data from natural populations of M.tb have emphasized the role of genetic drift in shaping patterns of diversity, the influence of natural selection on this successful pathogen is less well understood. We investigated(More)
Despite advances in understanding the patterns and processes of microevolution in RNA viruses, little is known about the determinants of viral diversification at the macroevolutionary scale. In particular, the processes by which viral lineages assigned as different "species" are generated remain largely uncharacterized. To address this issue, we use a(More)