C. Brandon Ogbunugafor

Learn More
BACKGROUND The ability for an evolving population to adapt to a novel environment is achieved through a balance of robustness and evolvability. Robustness is the invariance of phenotype in the face of perturbation and evolvability is the capacity to adapt in response to selection. Genetic robustness has been posited, depending on the underlying mechanism,(More)
Evolutionary biologists often seek to infer historical patterns of relatedness among organisms using phylogenetic methods and to gauge the evolutionary processes that determine variation among individuals in extant populations. But relatively less effort is devoted to making evolutionary biology a truly predictive science, where future evolutionary events(More)
RNA viruses may be particularly capable of contributing to the increasing biomedical problem of infectious disease emergence. Empirical studies and epidemiological models are informative for the understanding of evolutionary processes that promote pathogen emergence, but rarely are these approaches combined in the same study. Here, we used an epidemiology(More)
Life-history theory predicts that traits for survival and reproduction cannot be simultaneously maximized in evolving populations. For this reason, in obligate parasites such as infectious viruses, selection for improved between-host survival during transmission may lead to evolution of decreased within-host reproduction. We tested this idea using(More)
Robustness describes the capacity for a biological system to remain canalized despite perturbation. Genetic robustness affords maintenance of phenotype despite mutational input, necessarily involving the role of epistasis. Environmental robustness is phenotypic constancy in the face of environmental variation, where epistasis may be uninvolved. Here we(More)
The adaptive landscape analogy has found practical use in recent years, as many have explored how their understanding can inform therapeutic strategies that subvert the evolution of drug resistance. A major barrier to applications of these concepts is a lack of detail concerning how the environment affects adaptive landscape topography, and consequently,(More)
The study of reverse evolution from resistant to susceptible phenotypes can reveal constraints on biological evolution, a topic for which evolutionary theory has relatively few general principles. The public health catastrophe of antimicrobial resistance in malaria has brought these constraints on evolution into a practical realm, with one proposed(More)
The concept of "deception" in fitness landscapes was introduced in the genetic algorithm (GA) literature to characterize problems where sign epistasis can mislead a GA away from the global optimum. Evolutionary geneticists have long recognized that sign epistasis is the source of the ruggedness of fitness landscapes, and the recent availability of a growing(More)
Much of the public lacks a proper understanding of Darwinian evolution, a problem that can be addressed with new learning and teaching approaches to be implemented both inside the classroom and in less formal settings. Few analogies have been as successful in communicating the basics of molecular evolution as John Maynard Smith's protein space analogy(More)
Listed above are simplified descriptions of several past and current debates in the biological sciences. The points of departure in these conflicts lie not only in defining what the appropriate question is, but also in differences in approach to understanding certain phenomena. Such debates involve politics, can become personal and, consequently, can(More)