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BEAST 2.5: An Advanced Software Platform for Bayesian Evolutionary Analysis


Abstract

Elaboration of Bayesian phylogenetic inference methods has continued at pace in recent years with major new advances in nearly all aspects of the joint modelling of evolutionary data. It is increasingly appreciated that some evolutionary questions can only be adequately answered by combining evidence from multiple independent sources of data, including genome sequences, sampling dates, phenotypic data, radiocarbon dates, fossil occurrences, and biogeographic range information among others. Including all relevant data into a single joint model is very challenging both conceptually and computationally. Advanced computational software packages that allow robust development of compatible (sub-)models which can be composed into a full model hierarchy have played a key role in these developments.
Developing such software frameworks is increasingly a major scientific activity in its own right, and comes with specific challenges, from practical software design, development and engineering challenges to statistical and conceptual modelling challenges. BEAST 2 is one such computational software platform, and was first announced over 4 years ago. Here we describe a series of major new developments in the BEAST 2 core platform and model hierarchy that have occurred since the first release of the software, culminating in the recent 2.5 release.

Abstract

Elaboration of Bayesian phylogenetic inference methods has continued at pace in recent years with major new advances in nearly all aspects of the joint modelling of evolutionary data. It is increasingly appreciated that some evolutionary questions can only be adequately answered by combining evidence from multiple independent sources of data, including genome sequences, sampling dates, phenotypic data, radiocarbon dates, fossil occurrences, and biogeographic range information among others. Including all relevant data into a single joint model is very challenging both conceptually and computationally. Advanced computational software packages that allow robust development of compatible (sub-)models which can be composed into a full model hierarchy have played a key role in these developments.
Developing such software frameworks is increasingly a major scientific activity in its own right, and comes with specific challenges, from practical software design, development and engineering challenges to statistical and conceptual modelling challenges. BEAST 2 is one such computational software platform, and was first announced over 4 years ago. Here we describe a series of major new developments in the BEAST 2 core platform and model hierarchy that have occurred since the first release of the software, culminating in the recent 2.5 release.

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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Paleontological Institute and Museum
Dewey Decimal Classification:560 Fossils & prehistoric life
Scopus Subject Areas:Life Sciences > Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Physical Sciences > Modeling and Simulation
Physical Sciences > Ecology
Life Sciences > Molecular Biology
Life Sciences > Genetics
Life Sciences > Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
Physical Sciences > Computational Theory and Mathematics
Uncontrolled Keywords:Ecology, Modelling and Simulation, Computational Theory and Mathematics, Genetics, Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics, Molecular Biology, Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
Language:English
Date:8 April 2019
Deposited On:29 May 2019 14:19
Last Modified:23 Jun 2020 12:11
Publisher:Public Library of Science (PLoS)
ISSN:1553-734X
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pcbi.1006650
Related URLs:https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/474296v1

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