Invited Seminar at CES on 28 November 2023 at 11:00 am titled "Survival and extinction of small isolated populations" by Dr Anubhab Khan from Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Glasgow, UK

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Survival and extinction of small isolated populations
Dr Anubhab Khan, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Glasgow, UK
Date & Time: 
28 Nov 2023 - 11:00am
Event Type: 
Invited Seminar
CES Seminar Hall, 3rd Floor, Biological Sciences Building
Before the talk

 Small isolated populations are the history of living beings. Studies of demographic histories of non-model organisms reveal that almost all populations have faced severe bottlenecks at least once in the past. Additionally, speciation events are often correlated with founding bottlenecks. Classical population genetics theory suggests small isolated populations are faced with threats of extinction. This is generally visualized as an extinction vortex where, small populations lose diversity due to stochasticity and inbreeding leading to reduced fitness of the individuals accompanied with reduced survival and fewer offspring further leading to a smaller population spiralling to extinction. However, despite the severe bottlenecks faced we observe the present biodiversity. Genomics studies of wild populations threatened with extinction present insights into how populations may have persisted over time to escape the extinction vortex. Modern insights from studies of threatened populations highlight the importance of neutral genetic diversity along with the role of purging and geneflow in the persistence of populations. Here, using tigers, rhinocerous and elephant populations, I illuminate a potential model of survival and extinction in small populations that might explain the observed biodiversity. Additionally, I will explore some ways in which research on small populations can be promoted in the tropical countries generally underrepresented in the literature.