Dan Sloan

Dan SloanAssistant Professor
Office: Biology Building 438
Phone: 970-491-2256
Website: https://sites.google.com/site/danielbsloan/
Education: Ph.D. University of Virginia
Email: dan.sloan@colostate.edu

Across the tree of life, biological organisms exhibit remarkable diversity in genome size, structure, and function. Research in our lab aims to elucidate the evolutionary causes and consequences of this diversity. In many organisms, DNA is partitioned between two or more genomic compartments within the same cell. For example, eukaryotic cells contain both nuclear and organelle genomes, and many organisms harbor microbial endosymbionts inside their own cells. One of the overarching hypotheses that we are investigating is that interactions between these co-occurring genomes represent a major mechanism of evolution. This work has predominantly involved flowering plants, but we also eagerly collaborate on projects investigating diverse organisms such as sap-feeding insects, endosymbiotic bacteria, and humans. We apply an integrative approach that includes field sampling of natural populations, genetic crossing designs, analysis of plant growth and physiology, genome editing, and computational genomic analysis. To learn more about research in the lab, please visit our lab website. If you would like to discuss joining the lab, please e-mail me and include a brief description of your research interests.  

Selected Publications

Sloan DB, Warren JM, Williams AW, Wu Z, Abdel-Ghany SE, Chicco AJ, Havird JC. 2018. Cytonuclear integration and co-evolution. Nature Reviews Genetics. 19: 635-648.

Sloan DB, Broz AK, Sharbrough J, Wu Z. 2018. Detecting rare mutations and DNA damage with sequencing-based methods. Trends in Biotechnology. 36: 729-740.

Sloan DB. 2017. Nuclear and mitochondrial RNA editing systems have opposite effects on protein diversity. Biology Letters. 13: 20170314.

Sloan DB, Havird JC, Sharbrough J. 2017. The on-again, off-again relationship between mitochondrial genomes and species boundaries. Molecular Ecology. 26: 2212-2236.

Rockenbach K, Havird JC, Monroe JG, Triant DA, Taylor DR, Sloan DB. 2016. Positive selection in rapidly evolving plastid-nuclear enzyme complexes. Genetics. 204: 1507-1522.

Havird JC, Sloan DB. 2016. The roles of mutation, selection, and expression in determining relative rates of evolution in mitochondrial vs. nuclear genomes. Molecular Biology and Evolution. 33: 3042-3053.

Moran NA, Sloan DB. 2015. The hologenome concept—helpful or hollow? PLoS Biology. 13: e1002311.

Havird JC, Whitehill NS, Snow CD, Sloan DB. 2015. Conservative and compensatory evolution in oxidative phosphorylation complexes of angiosperms with highly divergent rates of mitochondrial genome evolution. Evolution. 69: 3069-3081.

Sloan DB, Fields PD, Havird JC. 2015. Mitonuclear linkage disequilibrium in human populations. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences. 282: 20151704.

Wu Z, Cuthbert JM, Taylor DR, Sloan DB. 2015. The massive mitochondrial genome of the angiosperm Silene noctiflora is evolving by gain or loss of entire chromosomes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA. 112:10185-10191.

Sloan DB, Triant DA, Wu M, Taylor DR. 2014. Cytonuclear interactions and relaxed selection accelerate sequence evolution in organelle ribosomes. Molecular Biology and Evolution. 31: 673-682.

Sloan DB, Nakabachi A, Richards S, Qu J, Murali SC, Gibbs RA, Moran NA. 2014. Parallel histories of horizontal gene transfer facilitated extreme reduction of endosymbiont genomes in sap-feeding insects. Molecular Biology and Evolution. 31: 857-871.

Sloan DB, Alverson AJ, Chuckalovcak JP, Wu M, McCauley DE, Palmer JD, Taylor DR. 2012. Rapid evolution of enormous, multichromosomal genomes in flowering plant mitochondria with exceptionally high mutation rates. PLoS Biology. 10: e1001241.