2019 Stebbins Medal

IAPT is pleased to announce the 2019 Stebbins Medal for an outstanding publication in phylogenetic systematics and evolution. For this award the evaluation committee considered papers published in 2014-2017. The 2019 Stebbins Medal is awarded to:


James B. Pease, David C. Haak, Matthew W. Hahn, and Leonie C. Moyle for their 2016 publication “Phylogenomics reveals three sources of adaptive variation during a rapid radiation.” PLoS Biol. 14(2): e1002379.

The Stebbins committee provided this explanation of their selection:

There is considerable controversy in the literature about the sources of variation in adaptive radiations. This paper used transcriptome sequencing to identify and quantify the origins of adaptive variation in the adaptive radiation of tomatoes in the Andes. Using a phylogenetic approach, the authors found evidence of three sources of variation (de novo mutation, ancestral variation, and introgression) and showed that each has contributed roughly equally to adaptive diversification. This study represents a highly creative use of phylogenetic data to address a critical question in evolutionary biology. It also represents one of the first studies to investigate the underlying genetic basis of adaptive evolutionary radiations using genomic data across a clade of species.


Congratulations to the authors! The IAPT Council is grateful to the Stebbins Award committee for their hard work in making this difficult selection.


The next Stebbins Medal award will be made in 2021, selecting the best paper published in 2018 & 2019, thereby re-establishing the two-year cycle for the award.

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