Melissa A. Toups

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Human head lice (Anoplura: Pediculidae: Pediculus) are pandemic, parasitizing countless school children worldwide due to the evolution of insecticide resistance, and human body (clothing) lice are responsible for the deaths of millions as a result of vectoring several deadly bacterial pathogens. Despite the obvious impact these lice have had on their human(More)
Understanding the evolution of parasites is important to both basic and applied evolutionary biology. Knowledge of the genetic structure of parasite populations is critical for our ability to predict how an infection can spread through a host population and for the design of effective control methods. However, very little is known about the genetic(More)
Most of our knowledge of sex-chromosome evolution comes from male heterogametic (XX/XY) taxa. With the genome sequencing of multiple female heterogametic (ZZ/ZW) taxa, we can now ask whether there are patterns of evolution common to both sex chromosome systems. In all XX/XY systems examined to date, there is an excess of testis-biased retrogenes moving from(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)
The soil bacterium Myxococcus xanthus is a model for the study of cooperative microbial behaviours such as social motility and fruiting body formation. Several M. xanthus developmental traits that are frequently quantified for laboratory strains are likely to be significant components of fitness in natural populations, yet little is known about the degree(More)
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