The Cypriniformes Tree of Life
Undergraduate Research Program
Saint Louis University
University of Minnesota
The University of Alabama
|See activities with NSF Cypriniformes REU|
|Our NSF Assembling the Tree of Life (AToL) project focuses on the biodiversity, systematics, and evolution of the World's most diverse group of freshwater fishes - all belonging to the Order Cypriniformes. These fishes display a vast array of life styles, morphologies, behaviors, ecologies, and physiology, to only mention a few of the diverse aspects of their biology. The Cypriniformes Tree of Life initiative (CToL) will provide the scientific and public communities for the first time a reconstructed phylogeny of these important fishes to better understand the origins of these intreging biological attributes, as well as many other important applied and fundamenal questions.
With the great assistance of many undergraduate students working throughout the year in our laboratories we are able to examine many morphological and molecular traits of these fishes to reconstruct these phylogenetic relationships and test several scientific hypotheses. These hypotheses include examining rates of morphological and molecular evolution, patterns of biogeography related to Earth's history, rates and patterns of speciation, and evolution of morphological and ecological complexes.
The various students enjoying this experience from all of our institutions include
Part of our experience has included a group meetings at the University of Alabama and University of Minnesota, and sampling in the diverse rivers and streams of Alabama in June and Minnesota in August. At our meeting in August we had a mini symposium on our respective joint research projects.
General Photos of the summer experience
Photos and movies from Alabama 2005
Photos and movies from Minnesota 2005
Our 2005 REU Research Symposium