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Neotropical Piper

phylogenetic studies

Piper is a diverse genus of herbs, vines, lianas, shrubs and small trees comprised of nearly 2000 species worldwide.  

In my postdoctoral studies, I have taken the preliminary steps towards building a phylogeny of Neotropical Piper by sequencing two markers for 165 samples representing 35 species. I am also in the process of making a key to all the species of Piper found at La Selva Biological Station, which I am developing into a free app for use at the station. 

​Next, I would like to use next generation techniques to build a robust phylogeny for this fascinating genus. A well-resolved phylogeny of Piper will allow us to test many hypotheses about the evolutionary processes that have led to such high diversity in the genus Piper.

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                                                                                  Piper trigonum

                                                               photo by Ada Kaliszewska