Alan Templeton

 Alan Templeton

Charles Rebstock Professor of Biology Emeritus




Phone: (314) 935-6868

Office: McDonnell Hall 311

Washington University in St. Louis

Campus Box 1137

One Brookings Drive

St. Louis, MO 63130-4899


Research Interests

Alan’s work involves the application of molecular genetic techniques and statistical population genetics to a variety of evolutionary problems, both basic and applied. He applies evolutionary approaches to clinical genetics, including the study of the genetics of complex diseases, such as coronary artery disease and end-stage kidney disease, and to the relationship of the microbiome to clinically relevant traits.  He also applies evolutionary genetics to conservation biology, with his main current focus being the impact of managed forest fires at the landscape level upon the genetic population structure of species inhabiting that landscape, such as the Eastern collared lizard (Crotaphytus collaris collaris) and lichen hoppers (Trimerotropis saxatilis) and the impact of human activities upon dispersal in the endangered fire salamander (Salamandra salamandra infraimmuculata) in Northern Israel and the wild ass in Southern Israel. He also studies the role of plasticity in gene expression in allowing the fire salamanders to survive in a wide variety of environments.  Finally, he is interested in basic questions about evolution, such as the meaning of “species” and the mechanisms by which new species evolve, and human evolution over the last two million years, including the issue of human “race”.


Selected Publications

Templeton, A. R. 2010. Coherent and incoherent inference in phylogeography and human evolution. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107:6376-6381.

Shlush, L., S. Bercovici, W. Wasser, G. Yudkovsky, A. Templeton, D. Geiger, and K. Skorecki. 2010. Admixture mapping of end stage kidney disease genetic susceptibility using estimated mutual information ancestry informative markers. BMC Medical Genomics 3/47:12 pages.

Coventry, A., L. M. Bull-Otterson, X. Liu, A. G. Clark, T. J. Maxwell, J. Crosby, J. E. Hixson, T. J. Rea, D. M. Muzny, L. R. Lewis, D. A. Wheeler, A. Sabo, C. Lusk, K. G. Weiss, H. Akbar, A. Cree, A. C. Hawes, I. Newsham, R. T. Varghese, D. Villasana, S. Gross, V. Joshi, J. Santibanez, M. Morgan, K. Chang, W. H. Iv, A. R. Templeton, E. Boerwinkle, R. Gibbs, and C. F. Sing. 2010. Deep resequencing reveals excess rare recent variants consistent with explosive population growth. Nature Communications 1:131.

Templeton, A. R., H. Brazeal, and J. L. Neuwald. 2011. The transition from isolated patches to a metapopulation in the eastern collared lizard in response to prescribed fires. Ecology 92:1736-1747. **Featured on Cover and placed by the Faculty of 1000 in their library of the top 2% of published articles in biology and medicine.

Koester, B., T. J. Rea, A. R. Templeton, A. S. Szalay, and C. F. Sing. 2012. Long-range autocorrelations of CpG islands in the human genome. PLoS ONE 7:e29889.

Neuwald J. L. and A. R. Templeton. 2013. Genetic restoration in the eastern collared lizard under prescribed woodland burning. Molecular Ecology 22(14):3666-3679.

Blank, L., I. Sinai, S. Bar-David, N. Peleg, O. Segev, A. Sadeh, N. M. Kopelman, A. R. Templeton, J. Merilä, and L. Blaustein. 2013. Genetic population structure of the endangered fire salamander (Salamandra infraimmaculata) at the southernmost extreme of its distribution. Animal Conservation 16:412-421.

Templeton, A. R. 2013. Biological races in humans. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 44:262-271.