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Dr. Rebecca Symula

Rebecca_SymulaInstructional Associate Professor
Department of Biology
University of Mississippi
University, MS 38677-1848
office: 202 Shoemaker Hall
phone: (662) 915-2709

Research Interests:

Evolutionary biology, phylogenetics, color pattern evolution, frogs, mimicry, speciation.


BISC 160: Biological Sciences I
BISC 162: Biological Sciences II
BISC 479: Evolution and Medicine

Education and training:

1993-1997 B.S. Biology Susquehanna University
1998-2001 M.S. Biology East Carolina University
2002-2009 Ph.D. in Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, University of Texas at Austin, PhD in Ecology, Evolution & Behavior
2009-2011 Post-doctoral associate, Epidemiology & Public Health/Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, Yale University

Selected publications:

*Co-first Author

Garrick, R.C., Bonatelli, I.A.S, Hyseni, C., Morales, A. Pelletier, T.A., Perez, M.F., Rice, E., Satler, J.D., Symula, R., Thorne, M.T.C., Carstens, B. 2015. The evolution of phylogeographic data sets. Molecular Ecology, 24(6):1164-1171. DOI: 10.1111/mec.13108.

Willis, P., Symula, R., Lovette, I. 2014. Ecology, song similarity and phylogeny predict natural hybridization in an avian family. Evolutionary Ecology, 28(2):299-322. DOI 10.1007/s10682-013-9677-4.

Symula, R.*, Alam, U.*, Brelsfoard, C., Wu, Y., Echodu, R., Okedi, L.M., Aksoy, S. Caccone, A. 2013. Wolbachia association with the tsetse fly, Glossina fuscipes fuscipes, reveals high levels of genetic diversity and complex evolutionary dynamics. BMC Evolutionary Biology, 13:31. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2148-13-31.

Symula, R.*, Beadell, J.S.*, Sistrom, M. Agbebakun, K., Balmer, O., Gibson, W., Aksoy, S., Caccone, A. 2012. Trypanosoma brucei gambiense group 1 is distinguished by a unique amino acid substitution in the HpHb receptor implicated in human serum resistance. . PLoSNTD, 6(7): e1728. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0001728.

Alam, U., Hyseni, C., Symula, R., Brelsfoard, C., Wu, Y., Kruglov, O., Okedi, L., Caccone, G., Aksoy, S. Microfauna-host interactions: implications for trypanosome transmission dynamics in Glossina fuscipes fuscipes in Uganda. In Review Applied and Environmental Microbiology

Rio, R.*, Symula, R*., Wang, J., Lohs, C., Wu, Y., Snyder, A., Bjornson, R. Oshima, K., Biehl, B., Perna, N., Hattori, M., Aksoy, S. Insight into transmission biology and species-specific functional capabilities of tsetse’s obligate symbiont Wigglesworthia. In Press mBio.

Symula, R., Aksoy, S., Caccone, A. 2011. Phylogeographic examination of geographically isolated populations of W. g. fuscipes reveals strict vertical transmission of symbionts and correlation with patterns identified in host populations. In Press Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 77:8400-8408.

Symula, R., Keogh, J.S., Cannatella, D.C. 2008. Ancient phylogeographic divergence in southeastern Australia among populations of the widespread common froglet, Crinia signifera. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 47:569-580.

Symula, R., Schulte, R. and Summers, K. 2003. Molecular systematics and phylogeography of Amazonian poison frogs of the genus Dendrobates. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 26: 452-475.

Symula, R., Schulte, R. and Summers, K. 2001. Molecular phylogenetic evidence for a mimetic radiation in Peruvian poison frogs supports Müllerian mimicry hypothesis. Proceedings of the Royal Society, Series B, 268:2415-2421.