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Advances and limitations of maximum likelihood phylogenetics

Tuesday 4th September 2007 - 09:00 to 10:00
INI Seminar Room 1

I'll present recent developments in inferring phylogenies from sequences by maximum likelihood (ML). In fact, this approach involves two main components: probabilistic modelling of substitution events, and algorithmics to infer near-optimal trees. I'll show that algorithmics has considerably progressed during the last few years, allowing now for fast ML inference from large datasets. On the other hand, I'll underline the difficulties encountered with modelling, especially of protein evolution, and show that elaborating more realistic and improved substitution models is a major challenge.

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University of Cambridge Research Councils UK
    Clay Mathematics Institute London Mathematical Society NM Rothschild and Sons