Spatially Continuous Populations

Classical models of structured populations assume that individuals reproduce and disperse independently, and so do not account for many features seen in real populations. Correlations across loci reveal their shared history, patterns may extend over very large spatial scales, and diversity is often lower than expected from census numbers. 

Jerome Kelleher (Oxford),  Alison Etheridge (Oxford) and  Nick Barton are working on a model of long-range extinction and recolonisation. Unlike the classical models, this has a well-defined backwards process, which can be used to simulate the genealogy of a sample of neutral genes.

Other projects include work with Michael Turelli (UC Davis) to optimise a program to eliminate dengue fever and other diseases by releasing Wolbachia infected mosquitoes (EliminateDENGUE), and work by Parvathy Surendranadh to model the spatial structure of the Antirrhinum hybrid zone.

Recent Papers

Barton, N.H., J. Kelleher, A.M. Etheridge. 2010 A new model for large-scale population dynamics: quantifying phylogeography. Evolution 64: 2701-2715

Schmidt, T.L, Barton, N.H., Rasic, G., Turley, A.P., Montgomery, B.L., Iturbe-Ormaetxa, I., Cook, P.E., Ryan, P.A., Ritchie, S.A., Hoffmann, S.L., O’Neill, S.L., Turelli, M. 2017. Successful local introduction and heterogeneous spatial spread of dengue-suppressing Wolbachia through an urban population of Aedes aegypti. PLoS Biology  

Surendranadh P, Arathoon LS, Baskett C, Field D, Pickup M, Barton NH. 2022. Effects of fine-scale population structure on the distribution of heterozygosity in a long-term study of Antirrhinum majus. Genetics 221(3), iyac083.