John M. Burke

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Simple-sequence repeats (SSRs) have increasingly become the marker of choice for population genetic analyses. Unfortunately, the development of traditional 'anonymous' SSRs from genomic DNA is costly and time-consuming. These problems are further compounded by a paucity of resources in taxa that lack clear economic importance. However, the advent of the(More)
In microorganisms, noise in gene expression gives rise to cell-to-cell variability in protein concentrations. In mammalian cells, protein levels also vary and individual cells differ widely in their responsiveness to uniform physiological stimuli. In the case of apoptosis mediated by TRAIL (tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-related apoptosis-inducing ligand) it(More)
When exposed to tumor necrosis factor (TNF) or TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL), a closely related death ligand and investigational therapeutic, cells enter a protracted period of variable duration in which only upstream initiator caspases are active. A subsequent and sudden transition marks activation of the downstream effector caspases that(More)
Over the years, the evolutionary importance of natural hybridization has been a contentious issue. At one extreme is the relatively common view of hybridization as an evolutionarily unimportant process. A less common perspective, but one that has gained support over the past decade, is that of hybridization as a relatively widespread and potentially(More)
Apoptosis in response to TRAIL or TNF requires the activation of initiator caspases, which then activate the effector caspases that dismantle cells and cause death. However, little is known about the dynamics and regulatory logic linking initiators and effectors. Using a combination of live-cell reporters, flow cytometry, and immunoblotting, we find that(More)
Genomic studies of speciation often report the presence of highly differentiated genomic regions interspersed within a milieu of weakly diverged loci. The formation of these speciation islands is generally attributed to reduced inter-population gene flow near loci under divergent selection, but few studies have critically evaluated this hypothesis. Here, we(More)
Genetic linkage maps have the potential to facilitate the genetic dissection of complex traits and comparative analyses of genome structure, as well as molecular breeding efforts in species of agronomic importance. Until recently, the majority of such maps was based on relatively low-throughput marker technologies, which limited marker density across the(More)
Genetically modified (GM) plants are rapidly becoming a common feature of modern agriculture. This transition to engineered crops has been driven by a variety of potential benefits, both economic and ecological. The increase in the use of GM crops has, however, been accompanied by growing concerns regarding their potential impact on the environment. Here,(More)