New Faculty Profile: Matthew Osmond, Assistant Professor.
As an evolutionary biologist, Osmond uses mathematical models to study evolutionary rescue — a phenomenon whereby a population in decline is rescued from extinction by adaptive evolution. The phenomenon lies at the intersection of ecology and evolution with implications for conservation; for example, with endangered species confronted with anthropogenic disturbance. It also has implications for medicine; for example, with the evolution of drug resistance in human pathogens. Osmond is also building statistical methods to infer the past from information contained in present-day genomes. For example, a recent focus is to infer where a person’s genetic ancestors were located geographically at every site along their genome.
Osmond received his BSc from Queen’s University; his MSc from McGill; and his PhD from the University of British Columbia. Subsequently, he was a Banting and Center of Population Biology postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, Davis.
Recent publications focus on the genetics of evolutionary rescue and include: Genetic paths to evolutionary rescue and the distribution of fitness effects along them, in Genetics, 202