Sampling phylogenetic tree space with the generalized Gibbs sampler

Jonathan Keith, Peter Adams, Mark Regan, Darryn Bryant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


he generalized Gibbs sampler (GGS) is a recently developed Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) technique that enables Gibbs-like sampling of state spaces that lack a convenient representation in terms of a fixed coordinate system. This paper describes a new sampler, called the tree sampler, which uses the GGS to sample from a state space consisting of phylogenetic trees. The tree sampler is useful for a wide range of phylogenetic applications, including Bayesian, maximum likelihood, and maximum parsimony methods. A fast new algorithm to search for a maximum parsimony phylogeny is presented, using the tree sampler in the context of simulated annealing. The mathematics underlying the algorithm is explained and its time complexity is analyzed. The method is tested on two large data sets consisting of 123 sequences and 500 sequences, respectively. The new algorithm is shown to compare very favorably in terms of speed and accuracy to the program DNAPARS from the PHYLIP package
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)459 - 468
Number of pages10
JournalMolecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes

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