"Evolutionary and conservation genomics of oaks", Victoria Sork, Professor at the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, UCLA
Source: BRS series
Oaks are an evolutionary and ecological success story yet their ability to respond and adapt to rapid climate change will determine their future success. In the first part of the talk, I will summarize studies of landscape genomics, DNA methylation, and gene expression to present evidence for adaptation in my focal study species, Valley oak (Quercus lobata). In the second part, I will integrate findings from two common garden, including an analysis of relative growth rates, to show that valley oak populations may actually be maladapted to contemporary climate. Given the need for restoration of oak populations after increasingly frequent fires, I propose that oak replanting will be more resilient to climate change if genome-informed assisted gene flow practices are deployed.