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J Comput Biol. 2012 Mar;19(3):293-315. doi: 10.1089/cmb.2011.0231. Epub 2012 Jan 4.

iGLASS: an improvement to the GLASS method for estimating species trees from gene trees.

Author information

1
Department of Biology, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305-5020, USA. emjewett@stanford.edu

Abstract

Several methods have been designed to infer species trees from gene trees while taking into account gene tree/species tree discordance. Although some of these methods provide consistent species tree topology estimates under a standard model, most either do not estimate branch lengths or are computationally slow. An exception, the GLASS method of Mossel and Roch, is consistent for the species tree topology, estimates branch lengths, and is computationally fast. However, GLASS systematically overestimates divergence times, leading to biased estimates of species tree branch lengths. By assuming a multispecies coalescent model in which multiple lineages are sampled from each of two taxa at L independent loci, we derive the distribution of the waiting time until the first interspecific coalescence occurs between the two taxa, considering all loci and measuring from the divergence time. We then use the mean of this distribution to derive a correction to the GLASS estimator of pairwise divergence times. We show that our improved estimator, which we call iGLASS, consistently estimates the divergence time between a pair of taxa as the number of loci approaches infinity, and that it is an unbiased estimator of divergence times when one lineage is sampled per taxon. We also show that many commonly used clustering methods can be combined with the iGLASS estimator of pairwise divergence times to produce a consistent estimator of the species tree topology. Through simulations, we show that iGLASS can greatly reduce the bias and mean squared error in obtaining estimates of divergence times in a species tree.

PMID:
22216756
PMCID:
PMC3298679
DOI:
10.1089/cmb.2011.0231
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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