Benefits and Costs of Mutational Robustness in RNA Viruses

Date Thursday October 22, 2015 at 4:00 PM
Location A2-342 MDCC, Moss Auditorium, Marion Davies Children's Clinic
Speaker Simone Bianco, Ph.D., Research Staff Member, IBM Almaden Research Center, San Jose, California
Sponsoring Dept UCLA Biomathematics
Abstract The accumulation of mutations in RNA viruses is thought to facilitate rapid adaptation to changes in the environment. However, most mutations have deleterious effects. Thus, tolerance to mutations should determine the nature and extent of genetic diversity in the population. I will present a combination of population genetics theory, computer simulation, and experimental evolution to examine the advantages and disadvantages of tolerance to mutations, also known as mutational robustness. Our findings may inform therapeutic strategies that cause extinction of otherwise robust viral populations.
Flyer Simone_Bianco_20151022.pdf