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Abstract Detail

Systematics Section/ASPT

Burleigh, J. Gordon [1], Crandall, Keith [2], Cranston, Karen [3], Gude, Karl [4], Hibbett, David [5], Holder, Mark T. [6], Katz, Laura A. [7], Ree, Richard [8], Smith, Stephen A. [9], Soltis, Douglas [10], Williams, Tiffany [11].

Open Tree of Life: Community Driven Synthesis of the Tree of Life.

Reconstructing the phylogeny of all species has been a grand challenge since Darwin. The goal of elucidating the phylogenetic relationships of all species-building the complete tree of life has now emerged as one of the grandest and most daunting scientific challenges ever undertaken.The scope of the problem is immense: current estimates of the number of species range from 1.8 million to 8.7million.Much progress has recently been made in resolving the tree ,and systematists continue to generate new phylogenetic knowledge at all depths of ancestry. However, despite 150 years of effort, 55 AToL projects, and numerous other funded projects, we lack a comprehensive tree of life. Synthesis is currently inhibited by limits of available data, analytical power, and informatics infrastructure. Perhaps more importantly, it is also limited by a lack of compelling means and incentives for community participation. A comprehensive synthesis would yield great benefits across the life sciences, especially if it were self-sustaining, community-driven, and continually updated. We describe a recently funded AToL project named "Open Tree of Life" ¯in which we will establish a community-driven, continually updated estimate of the entire tree, and develop new software tools and new methods for merging and sharing data.Open Tree of Life will: 1)within one year, compile the first comprehensive draft tree of life by synthesizing existing phylogenetic and taxonomic knowledge; 2) enable the community to improve, annotate, and expand this initial tree; 3) initiate a cultural transformation in systematics towards pervasive and ingrained practices of data sharing; and 4) develop novel methods for synthetic tree reconstruction. By engaging the systematics community with these resources, our over arching goal is to cultivate ongoing synthesis on a large scale,in a manner that will transform current cultural norms in the field.

Broader Impacts:

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1 - University of Florida, Biology , Gainesville, FL, 32605, USA
2 - Brigham Young University, Biology , Provo, UT, 84602, USA
3 - National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, 2024 W. Main Street, Durham, NC, 27705, USA
4 - Michigan State University, School of Journalism, East Lansing, MI, 48824, USA
5 - CLARK UNIVERSITY, Department Of Biology, WORCESTER, MA, 01610-1477, USA
6 - University of Kansas, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Lawrence, KS, 66045, USA
7 - Smith College, Department of Biological Sciences, Northampton, MA, 01063, USA
8 - Field Museum Of Natural History, Botany, 1400 S Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL, 60605, USA
9 - University of Michigan, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Ann Arbor, MI, 48109, USA
10 - University of Florida, Biology and Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainesville, FL, 32605, USA
11 - Texas A&M University, Computer Science, College Station, TX, 77843, USA

Tree of life
community synthesis.

Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: P
Location: Battelle South/Convention Center
Date: Monday, July 9th, 2012
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PSY001
Abstract ID:1065

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