Bayesian molecular clock dating of species divergences in the genomics era

Mario dos Reis, Philip C J Donoghue, Ziheng Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

114 Citations (Scopus)
649 Downloads (Pure)


Five decades have passed since the proposal of the molecular clock hypothesis,
which states that the rate of evolution at the molecular level is constant through time and among species. This hypothesis has become a powerful tool in evolutionary biology, making it possible to use molecular sequences to estimate the geological ages of species divergence events. With recent advances in Bayesian clock dating methodology and the explosive accumulation of genetic sequence data, molecular clock dating has found widespread applications, from tracking virus pandemics and studying the macroevolutionary process of speciation and extinction to estimating a timescale for life on Earth
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-80
Number of pages10
JournalNature Reviews Genetics
Issue number2
Early online date21 Dec 2015
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2016


  • Molecular evolution
  • Phylogenetics
  • Speciation
  • Statistical methods

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