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The Jones Lab

Plant Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Summer 2016 Updates

June 28th, 2016

Summer is in full swing in the lab.  Kristen is at a genetics workshop in New Mexico, Tyler is doing field work at Wind River forest in Washington, and Andy will present research results at the ATBC meeting in Montpellier, France, mentor students and scientists at the CTFS Analytical Workshop in Hainan, China, and visit field sites in Panama.

New Publication

June 10th, 2016

Zalamea et al. just published an article in the New Phytologist on tropical seedling responses to phosphorus.  You can read the article here.  Well done all.

Postdoc Available at OSU

February 2nd, 2016

Postdoctoral Position in Plant Oomycete Pathogen interactions at Oregon State University

A postdoctoral scholar position to apply genomic approaches to understanding the ecology and evolution of oomycete pathogens and their plant hosts is open in the laboratory of Drs. Andy Jones, Nik Grunwald, and Brett Tyler at Oregon State University.  The NSF-funded Dimensions of Biodiversity project is entitled “Dynamical interactions between plant and oomycete biodiversity in a temperate forest”. The overarching goal of the project is to examine the role of native oomycete plant pathogens in maintaining tree species diversity in an old growth forest in the Pacific Northwest. Oomycetes, or water molds, are highly destructive plant pathogens, well known for causing the Irish potato famine and sudden oak death. Though known as agricultural pathogens, oomycetes are diverse organisms that are native to and abundant in many forest ecosystems. However, less is known about the ecological roles that oomycete pathogens play in natural forest ecosystems. This project will examine three dimensions of oomycete and plant interactions: (i) document the oomycete species present in the Wind River forest in Washington, (ii) determine the functional ability of each oomycete species to infect or limit the growth and survival of abundant and rare plant species in the forest, and (iii) use genetics and genomics to determine how oomycetes adapt to different plant hosts. A particular focus will be on the role of endemic broad host range oomycetes, and how their interactions with dominant and less abundant host plants may differ.

Research will involve field collection of samples (plant and oomycetes), and lab work including genotyping and genome sequencing using Illumina techniques, data assembly and annotation, and population genetic and genomic analyses.  The applicant will work closely with the project PIs, graduate and undergraduate students, and technicians and will be responsible for project coordination in the lab and field, analyzing results, writing manuscripts, and contributing to the development of research approaches and directions.

The applicant is required to have a recent relevant Ph.D. in the biological sciences related to population genetics, ecology and/or evolution, with expertise in the lab and field.  Required skills include experimental design and knowledge of population genetics. Experience with R, python, or other programming environments is required. No prior postdoctoral experience is required. The position will be renewed annually, dependent upon achieving project goals.  The position is based at Oregon State University with fieldwork in Southern Washington state. Therefore, the position requires a willingness and ability to travel for extended periods of time.

To be considered for this position, send as a single pdf, a CV, copies of up to three relevant publications, a cover letter that includes future professional interests, and the names and contact information for three references to jonesfr@science.oregonstate.edu.  Please include “Oomycete Plant Interaction Postdoc” in the subject header.  Informal inquiries are welcome at the same address.  More information can be found at http://blogs.oregonstate.edu/joneslab/.

Review of applications will begin February 21 and will continue until the position is filled.

Integrating functional, phylogenetic and genetic components of diversity for an improved understanding of forest structure, dynamics, and change

January 20th, 2016

Very excited to report that our NSF Dimensions of Biodiversity grant to continue ForestGEO/CTFS analytical workshops with NSF – China has officially been awarded.  This is in collaboration with PI Stuart Davies (STRI) and coPIs Liza Comita (Yale), Nathan Swenson (Maryland), and Helene Muller-Landau (STRI). Looking forward to seeing everyone in China in the summer of 2016.  See the research page for more details.

The effect of an extreme El Nino event on tropical forest seedling regeneration

January 13th, 2016

The Jones lab is happy to report that we’ve been awarded an NSF RAPID grant to study the effects of the extreme 2016 El Nino event on tropical forest regeneration across a strong rainfall gradient in Panama.  The project is in collaboration with Drs. Liza Comita (Yale University), Bettina Engelbrecht (University of Bayreuth), Joe Wright (STRI), and Owen Lewis (Oxford).  See the research page for more details.

STRI REU 2016

December 11th, 2015

Applications are now being accepted for the 2016 Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program in Integrative Tropical Biology at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama.

The program will run from June 6 – August 13 2016 with an application deadline on February 15 next year. During the 10-week REU summer program, interns will experience several aspects of project design, fieldwork and research on existing projects led by STRI scientists. Students will receive a highly competitive stipend, travel expenses, food and housing during their stay in Panama.

STRI looking for advanced undergraduate students (third or fourth year) interested in the life sciences, broadly defined, who are interested in exploring the processes that generate our world’s extraordinary diversity. To qualify for NSF REU funds, applicants must be U.S. citizen or permanent resident. New funding from Panama’s National Secretariat of Science, Technology and Innovation (SENACYT) will allow Panamanian students to pair up with U.S. students in the 2016 program. Our program reaches across disciplines and in addition, we hope to identify a diverse cohort of students and encourage applications from women, ethnic minorities, economically disadvantaged students, and students from institutions that lack direct access to research opportunities.

Contact strireu@si.edu if you have any further questions.

Ecology Letters Paper

October 24th, 2015

New paper on the relationship between above and below ground plant and microbial community structure is available online in Ecology Letters.

Well done all.

Lab research highlighted in STRI magazine

October 16th, 2015

Read about the El Nino event and the implications it has for tropical forests in Panama, including our current drought experiment. Download TROPICOS here.

Dimensions of Biodiversity grant awarded

September 11th, 2015

The Jones lab and collaborators have been awarded a Dimensions of Biodiversity grant “Dynamical interactions between plant and oomycete biodiversity in a temperate forest.” by NSF. The work will be done in collaboration with PI Brett Tyler (OSU CGRB), and coPIs Nik Grunwald (USDA ), David Oline (Southern Oregon University), Margaret Metz (Lewis & Clark), and Jim Lutz (Utah State University). Check the research page for more details.

May 5th, 2015
  • About Andy Jones

    • Andy Jones is an Assistant Professor in the Botany and Plant Pathology Department at Oregon State University. He has broad interests in the ecological and evolutionary mechanisms responsible for the origin and maintenance of plant diversity.

        Dr. Jones is a Research Associate at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.