Rasmus Nielsen

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Comparison of relative fixation rates of synonymous (silent) and nonsynonymous (amino acid-altering) mutations provides a means for understanding the mechanisms of molecular sequence evolution. The nonsynonymous/synonymous rate ratio (omega = d(N)d(S)) is an important indicator of selective pressure at the protein level, with omega = 1 meaning neutral(More)
Codon-based substitution models have been widely used to identify amino acid sites under positive selection in comparative analysis of protein-coding DNA sequences. The nonsynonymous-synonymous substitution rate ratio (d(N)/d(S), denoted omega) is used as a measure of selective pressure at the protein level, with omega > 1 indicating positive selection.(More)
As a discipline, phylogenetics is becoming transformed by a flood of molecular data. These data allow broad questions to be asked about the history of life, but also present difficult statistical and computational problems. Bayesian inference of phylogeny brings a new perspective to a number of outstanding issues in evolutionary biology, including the(More)
Several codon-based models for the evolution of protein-coding DNA sequences are developed that account for varying selection intensity among amino acid sites. The "neutral model" assumes two categories of sites at which amino acid replacements are either neutral or deleterious. The "positive-selection model" assumes an additional category of positively(More)
Detecting positive Darwinian selection at the DNA sequence level has been a subject of considerable interest. However, positive selection is difficult to detect because it often operates episodically on a few amino acid sites, and the signal may be masked by negative selection. Several methods have been developed to test positive selection that acts on(More)
The genetic study of diverging, closely related populations is required for basic questions on demography and speciation, as well as for biodiversity and conservation research. However, it is often unclear whether divergence is due simply to separation or whether populations have also experienced gene flow. These questions can be addressed with a full model(More)
In 1988, Felsenstein described a framework for assessing the likelihood of a genetic data set in which all of the possible genealogical histories of the data are considered, each in proportion to their probability. Although not analytically solvable, several approaches, including Markov chain Monte Carlo methods, have been developed to find approximate(More)
A Markov chain Monte Carlo method for estimating the relative effects of migration and isolation on genetic diversity in a pair of populations from DNA sequence data is developed and tested using simulations. The two populations are assumed to be descended from a panmictic ancestral population at some time in the past and may (or may not) after that be(More)
Neandertals, the closest evolutionary relatives of present-day humans, lived in large parts of Europe and western Asia before disappearing 30,000 years ago. We present a draft sequence of the Neandertal genome composed of more than 4 billion nucleotides from three individuals. Comparisons of the Neandertal genome to the genomes of five present-day humans(More)
Approximate methods for estimating the numbers of synonymous and nonsynonymous substitutions between two DNA sequences involve three steps: counting of synonymous and nonsynonymous sites in the two sequences, counting of synonymous and nonsynonymous differences between the two sequences, and correcting for multiple substitutions at the same site. We examine(More)