Klaus-Peter Koepfli is a broadly trained conservation biologist at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute. He and his team develop and apply state-of-the-art genomic tools to inform conservation management strategies of species at risk for extinction and to dissect the underlying causes of inbreeding depression, particularly with regard to deleterious variation.
Captive breeding is often the last hope for many endangered species facing extinction, but a number of genetic challenges can compromise their long-term sustainability. Analyses based on whole genome sequences, or reduced representations of these, provide a fertile ground for investigating the interplay of population size and fitness, which have the potential to revolutionize how endangered species are managed under human care. Koepfli’s research also includes comparing the genomes of different species in order to gain insights into the evolution and maintenance of biological diversity.
Koepfli’s projects include:
- Understanding the genetic and epigenetic causes of decreased reproductive fitness in the endangered black-footed ferret (Mustela nigripes) using genomic tools
- Empowering ex situ conservation management of the critically endangered southern black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis minor) through sequencing and analysis of whole genomes
- Applying genomic data to enhance the conservation management of sable antelope (Hippotragus niger), dama gazelles (Nanger dama) and scimitar-horned oryx (Oryx dammah) in zoos and private ranches in North America
Gooley, Rebecca M., Tamazian, Gaik, Castaneda-Rico, Susette, Murphy, Katherine R., Dobrynin, Pavel, Ferrie, Gina M., Haefele, Holly, Maldonado, Jesus E., Wildt, David, Pukazhenthi, Budhan S., Edwards, Cody W., Koepfli, Klaus-Peter. 2020. Comparison of genomic diversity and structure of sable antelope (Hippotragus niger) in zoos, breeding centers and private ranches in North America. Evolutionary Applications. https://doi.org/10.1111/eva.12976
Humble, Emily, Dobrynin, Pavel, Senn, Helen, Chuven, Justin, Scott, Alan F., Mohr, David W., Dudchenko, Olga, Omer, Arina D., Colaric, Zane, Lieberman Aiden, Erez, Al Daheri, Shaikha Salem, Wildt, David, Oliaji, Shireen, Tamazian, Gaik, Pukazhenthi, Budhan, Ogden, Rob, Koepfli, Klaus-Peter. 2020. Chromosomal-level genome assembly of the scimitar-horned oryx: insights into diversity and demography of a species extinct in the wild. Molecular Ecology Resources. https://doi.org/10.1111/1755-0998.13181
de Manuel, Marc, Barnett, Ross, Sandoval-Velasco, Marcela, Yamaguchi, Nobuyuki, Garrett, Vieira, Filipe, Mendoza, M. Lisandra Zepeda, Liu, Shiping, Martin, Michael D., Sinding, Mikkel-Holger S., Mak, Sarah S. T., Carøe, Christian, Liu, Shanlin, Guo, Chunxue, Zheng, Jiao, Zazula, Grant, Baryshnikov, Gennady, Eizirik, Eduardo, Koepfli, Klaus-Peter, Johnson, Warren E., Antunes, Agostinho, Sicheritz-Ponten, Thomas, Gopalakrishnan, Shyam, Larson, Greger, Yang, Huanming, O’Brien, Stephen J., Hansen, Anders J., Zhang, Guojie, Marques-Bonet, Tomas, Gilbert, M. Thomas P. 2020. The evolutionary history of extinct and living lions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1919423117
Yang, Chentao, Li, Fang, Xiong, Zijun, Koepfli, Klaus-Peter, Ryder, Oliver, Perelman, Polina, Li, Qiye, Zhang, Guojie. 2020. A draft genome assembly of spotted hyena, Crocuta crocuta. Scientific Data. 7: 126.
Noskova Ekaterina, Ulyantsev, Vladimir, Koepfli, Klaus-Peter, O’Brien, Stephen J., and Dobrynin, Pavel. 2020. GADMA: Genetic algorithm for inferring demographic history of multiple populations from allele frequency spectrum data. GigaScience 9: giaa005.
Koepfli, Klaus-Peter, Gooley, Rebecca M. 2020. A modern synthesis of mammal conservation genetics. In: Ortega, Jorge, Maldonado, Jesus E. (Eds.), Conservation Genetics in Mammals. Springer International Publishing, Cham, Switzerland, pp. 3-11.
Koepfli, Klaus-Peter, Tamazian, Gaik, Wildt, David E., Dobrynin, Pavel, Kim, Changhoon, Frandsen, Paul B., Godinho, Raquel, Yurchenko, Andrey A., Komissarov, Aleksey, Krasheninnikova, Ksenia, Kliver, Sergei, Kolchanova, Sofia, Gonçalves, Margarida, Carneiro, Miguel, Vaz Pinto, Pedro, Ferrand, Nuno, Maldonado, Jesús E., Ferrie, Gina M., Chemnick, Leona, Ryder, Oliver A., Johnson, Warren E., Comizzoli, Pierre, O'Brien, Stephen J. and Pukazhenthi, Budhan S. 2019. Whole Genome Sequencing and Re-sequencing of the Sable Antelope (Hippotragus niger): A Resource for Monitoring Diversity in ex Situ and in Situ Populations. G3 (Bethesda, Md.), 1785-1793. https://doi.org/10.1534/g3.119.400084