Abstract Detail

Education and Outreach

Sutherland, Brittany [1], Barrett, Craig [2], Beck, James [3], Latvis, Maribeth [4], McKain, Michael [5], Sigel, Erin [6], Kooyers, Nicholas [7].

Combating invasives by encouraging growth: The Consortium for Plant INvasion Genomics (CPING).

Invasive species are forces of environmental, economic, and social change with detrimental impacts on ecosystems, commerce, agriculture, and human health. Despite billions of dollars of investment and increasingly active research, the genetic basis and evolution of invasiveness remains poorly understood due to a lack of genomic resources for most invasive plants. However, the recent development of low-cost, high-throughput DNA sequencing and improved bioinformatics tools has greatly lowered the barrier for studying non-model system plants, especially at smaller universities. To facilitate a greater understanding of invasive plant evolution and to train a new generation of plant scientists, the Consortium for Plant INvasion Genomics (CPING) studies five plant invasions of national concern: Johnsongrass, Japanese stiltgrass, Russian thistle, giant salvinia, and white clover. In each system, we use field-collected and herbarium specimens to construct time-series genomic datasets. These datasets allow us to examine the evolution of invasives through time, assessing colonization dynamics, gene flow, and adaptation throughout the invasion process. The species chosen for study span plant diversity, ploidal levels, mating systems, centers of origin, and patterns of invasion. 
Together, the five CPING focal species will yield a novel, synthetic understanding of the roles of the crucial population level processes involved in the spread of invasive plants, as well as offer unique, species-specific insights on the importance of asexuality, polyploidy, hybridization, and the proliferation of transposable elements in invasiveness. The rapidly expanding scale of genomic data and analyses has contributed to a rapidly growing bioinformatics skills gap separating many plant biologists at smaller universities from their peers. The CPING network seeks to address this gap by training a network of over 100 faculty, graduate students, and undergraduates in EPSCoR jurisdictions nationwide in modern genomic protocols and analyses. Through a series of in-person workshops and ongoing support, we will help expand the research capabilities of these labs, increasing their competitiveness for funding, and improving their ability to provide genomics and bioinformatics education for undergraduate STEM students. Additionally, CPING will make all of its genomic resources, training tutorials, laboratory protocols, and teaching materials publicly available. Through our combined research and outreach efforts, CPING will contribute to a greater understanding of invasive species evolution, and will help build a STEM workforce capable of addressing invasive species as a problem of national concern.

Related Links:
CPING Website

1 - University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Biology, 410 E. St. Mary Blvd, Lafayette, LA, 70503, US
2 - West Virginia University, Biology, 53 Campus Drive, Life Science Building 5218, Morgantown, WV, 26506, United States
3 - Wichita State University, Biology, 1845 Fairmount, Box 26, Wichita, KS, 67260, United States
4 - South Dakota State University, Department Of Natural Resource Management, 1390 College Avenue, Box 2140B, Brookings, SD, 57006, USA
5 - University Of Alabama, 411 Mary Harmon Bryant Hall, Tuscaloosa, AL, 35487, United States
6 - University of Louisiana, Lafayette, Biology, 410 E Saint Mary blvd, Lafayette, LA, 70503, United States
7 - Univerity Of Louisiana, Lafayette, Biology, 410 E. St. Mary Blvd. , Billeaud Hall, Rm 108, Lafayette, LA, 70503, United States

Invasive species
mating system

Presentation Type: Poster
Session: P, Education and Outreach Posters
Location: Virtual/Virtual
Date: Tuesday, July 28th, 2020
Time: 5:00 PM Time and date to be determined
Number: PEO003
Abstract ID:753
Candidate for Awards:None

Copyright © 2000-2020, Botanical Society of America. All rights reserved