Master of Science in Engineering Science (MSES)


Engineering Science (Interdepartmental Program)

Document Type



The availability of large amounts of genetic data from the mitochondrial DNA of species has created an unprecedented opportunity for the study of evolutionary processes. Being our closest relatives on the evolutionary tree the primates are a prime candidate for the study of evolutionary processes. The availability of large amounts of genetic data from the primates allows us to study and compare results from different phylogenetic reconstruction methods and to study and trace rudimentary evolutionary processes within the primate lineage. The evolutionary process studied here is the response of the nucleotide frequency ratios to single-strandedness of sites during mitochondrial DNA replication. This response curve is shown to be linear where the slope and intercept of the curve are related to the efficacy of the replication mechanisms and the binding capacity of the gamma-polymerase responsible for mitochondrial DNA replication. A Bayesian analysis of the response curves of the species is conducted and clustering schemes are developed to partition the species based on their response curves. These partitions are then mapped on the phylogenetic tree of the species to trace the evolution of the response curve within the primates.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Subhash Kak