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Sean Myles

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Sean Myles

Sean Myles was a postdoctoral associate in the Buckler Lab. Sean is currently Canada Research Chair in Agricultural Genetic Diversity and Assistant Professor, Department of Plant and Animal Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture, Dalhousie University.  More information about Sean can be found on his website here:

I am working on the genetics of grapes (Genus Vitis).  We have discovered over 100,000 SNPs by high-throughput Solexa sequencing technology on a set of 17 grape cultivars.  We have designed the 9kVitisSNP array, a first-generation custom SNP genotyping array which we are currently using to genotype ~2000 grape cultivars from the USDA grape germplasm collection.  Analyses of these data will  provide an in-depth description of worldwide genetic variation in the grape and represent the first step towards genome-wide association studies. Find out more about our grape research.

I also work on human population genetics.  My work focusses on identifying genes that have been subject to local natural selection and that are responsible for adaptive phenotypic differences between human populations.  I also investigate the effects of population structure on genetic association studies.  In particular, I am interested in investigating genotype-phenotype associations in underrepresented populations, such as Melanesians.  I have long been fascinated by how culture plays a role in shaping patterns of genetic diversity within and between human populations and you can read a NY times article about this topic here.



Myles S, Boyko AR, Owens CL, Brown PJ, Grassi F, Aradhya MK, Prins B, Reynolds A, Chia JM, Ware D, Bustamante CD, Buckler ES (2011) Genetic structure and domestication history of the grape. PNAS 108:3530

Gunnarsdóttir ED, Nandineni MR, Li M, Myles S, Gil D, Pakendorf B, Stoneking M (2011) Larger mtDNA than Y-chromosome differences between matrilocal and patrilocal groups from Sumatra. Nature Communications 2:228

Myles S, Lea RA, Ohashi J, Chambers GK, Weiss JG, Hardouin E, Engelken J, Macartney-Coxson DP, Eccles DA, Naka I, Kimura R, Inaoka T, Matsumura Y, Stoneking M (2011) Testing the thrifty gene hypothesis: the Gly482Ser variant in PPARGC1A is associated with BMI in Tongans. BMC Medical Genetics 12:10

Brown PJ, Myles S, Kresovich S (2011) Genetic support for phenotype-based racial classification in sorghum. Crop Science 51:1-7

Delfin F, Salvador JM, Calacal GC, Perdigon HB, Tabbada KA, Villamor LP, Halos SC, Gunnarsdóttir E, Myles S, Hughes DA, Xu S, Jin L, Lao O, Kayser M, Hurles ME, Stoneking M, De Ungria MCA (2011) The Y-chromosome landscape of the Philippines: extensive heterogeneity and varying genetic affinities of Negrito and non-Negrito groups. European Journal of Human Genetics 19:224-230

Laland K, Odling-Smee J, Myles S (2010) How culture shaped the human genome: bringing genetics and the human sciences together. Nature Reviews Genetics 11:137-148

Myles S, Chia J-M, Hurwitz B, Simon C, Zhong GY, Buckler E, Ware D (2010) Rapid Genomic Characterization of the Genus Vitis. PLoS ONE 5:e8219

Myles S, Peiffer J, Brown PJ, Ersoz ES, Zhang Z, Costich DE, Buckler ES. (2009) Association Mapping: Critical Considerations Shift from Genotyping to Experimental Design. Plant Cell 21:2194-2202

Myles S, Stoneking M, Timpson N. (2009) An assessment of the portability of ancestry informative markers between human populations. BMC Medical Genomics 2:45

Hillmer AM, Freudenberg J, Myles S, Herms S, Tang K, Hughes DA, Brockschmidt FF, Ruan Y, Stoneking M, Nöthen MM. (2009) Recent positive selection of a human androgen receptor/ectodysplasin A2 receptor haplotype and its relationship to male pattern baldness.  Human Genetics 126:255-264

Silander K, Tang H, Myles S, Jakkula E, Timpson N, Cavalli-Sforza L, Peltonen L. (2009) Worldwide patterns of haplotype diversity at 9p21.3, a locus associated with type 2 diabetes and coronary heart disease. Genome Medicine 1:51

Bryk J, Harouin E, Pugach I, Hughes D, Strotmann R, Stoneking M, Myles S. (2008) Positive selection in East Asians for an EDAR allele that enhances NF-κB activation. PLoS ONE 3:e2209

Myles S, Davison D, Barrett J, Stoneking M, Timpson N. (2008) Worldwide population differentiation at disease-associated SNPs. BMC Medical Genomics 1:22

Myles S, Tang K, Somel M, Kelso J, Stoneking M. (2008) Identification and analysis of high Fst regions from genome-wide SNP data from three human populations. Annals of Human Genetics 72:99-110

Meyer M, Stenzel U, Pruefer K, Myles S, Hofreiter M. (2007) Targeted high-throughput sequencing of tagged nucleic acid samples. Nucleic Acids Research 35:e97

Myles S, Hughes D, Stoneking M. (2007) Detecting local selection in humans. In Santos C, Lima M (eds) Recent Advances in Molecular Biology and Evolution: Applications to Biological Anthropology. Research Signpost, Kerala, India.

Myles S, Hradetzky E, Engelken J, Lao O, Nürnberg P, Trent R, Kayser M, Stoneking M. (2007) Identification of a candidate genetic variant for the high prevalence of type II diabetes in Polynesians. European Journal of Human Genetics 15:584-589

Myles S, Somel M, Tang K, Kelso J, Stoneking M. (2007) Identifying genes underlying skin pigmentation differences among human populations. Human Genetics 120:613-621

Myles S, Bouzekri N, Haverfield E, Cherkaoui M, Dugoujon JM, Ward R (2005) Genetic evidence in support of a shared European-North African dairying origin. Human Genetics 117:34-42

Dukas R, Morse DH, and Myles S. (2005) Experience levels of individuals in natural bee populations and their ecological implications. Canadian Journal of Zoology 83:492-497

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