Assistant ProfessorOffice: Anatomy-Zoology Building E439Phone: 970-491-6717Website: http://rydberg.biology.colostate.edu/muellerlabEducation: Ph.D., University of California, BerkeleyEmail: firstname.lastname@example.org
I am interested in three basic questions in evolutionary biology: (1) How do genes and genomes evolve? (2) How can genetic data be used to estimate phylogenetic trees? (3) How can the Tree of Life be used to study evolution and diversification of lineages? My research combines molecular phylogenetic analysis, comparative analysis of organismal biology, and functional genomic techniques. Much of my work focuses on the salamander family Plethodontidae, the lungless salamanders, a group of primarily terrestrial species concentrated in North, Central, and South America. I am interested in the evolution of a variety of traits within this group including: nuclear genome size, mitochondrial genome architecture, red blood cell morphology, life history, and miniaturization. I am also studying the phylogenetic performance of mitochondrial genes across diverse taxa. I am interested in incorporating functional genomic data from model laboratory systems such as the zebrafish into studies of both evolutionary morphology and molecular evolution.
Mueller, R. L., T. R. Gregory, S. M. Gregory, A. Hsieh, J. L. Boore. 2008. Genome size, cell size, and the evolution of enucleated erythrocytes in attenuate salamanders. Zoology 111: 218-230.
Hurley, I. A., Mueller, R. L., Dunn, K. A., Schmidt, E. J., Friedman, M., Ho, R. K., Prince, V. E., Yang, Z., Thomas, M. G., Coates, M. I. 2007. A new time-scale for ray-finned fish evolution. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 274: 489-498.
Mueller, R. L. 2006. Evolutionary rates, divergence dates, and the performance of mitochondrial genes in Bayesian phylogenetic analysis. Systematic Biology 55(2): 289-300.
Mueller, R. L. and Boore, J. L. 2005. Molecular mechanisms of extensive mitochondrial gene rearrangement in plethodontid salamanders. Molecular Biology and Evolution 22(10): 2104-2112.
Bonnet, R. M., Mueller, R. L., Wake, D. B. 2005. Why should reaquisition of larval stages by desmognathine salamanders surprise us? Herpetological Review 36(2): 112-113.
Mueller, R. L., Macey, J. R., Jaekel, M., Wake, D. B., Boore, J. L. 2004. Morphological homoplasy, life history evolution, and historical biogeography of plethodontid salamanders inferred from complete mitochondrial genomes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 101(38): 13820-13825.
Autumn, K., Jindrich, D., DeNardo, D., Mueller, R. 1999. Locomotor performance at low temperature and the evolution of nocturnality in geckos. Evolution 53(2): 580-599.