Discrete CATS Seminar
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UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY **

DISCRETE CATS SEMINAR

DISCRETE MATH AND COMBINATORICS: ALGEBRAIC & TOPOLOGICAL SEMINAR

113 PATTERSON OFFICE TOWER

FALL 2007

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"The Balanced Minimum Evolution Polytope for Phylogenetics"

Peter Huggins

Berkeley

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Monday, November 5, 2007

4:00 pm, 113 Patterson Office Tower

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Abstract:

Recovering tree metrics from perturbed pairwise distances is a
continually evolving topic in computational biology. On the
mathematical front, several recent results have eludicated the
Balanced Minimum Evolution (BME) method for building phylogenetic
trees. In a show-stopper paper, Gascuel and Steel have finally
unified BME with the classical neighbor joining algorithm, under an
umbrella of algorithms that all attempt to solve a particular linear
program over trees. In this talk I'll discuss the feasible region for
this linear program, which we call the BME polytope. After touring
the relevant background, I'll present recent results and important
questions about the combinatorics of this BME polytope.