Paul S. Manos

Professor in the Department of Biology

330 Bio Sci Bldg, Durham, NC 27708
Campus Box: 
Box 90338, Durham, NC 27708-0338
(919) 660-7358
My research emphasizes woody plants, especially the systematics of Fagaceae (the oak family), Juglandaceae (the walnut family), and related wind-pollinated families of flowering plants (Fagales). Our lab uses DNA sequences to generate hypotheses of phylogenetic relationship for inferring morphological character evolution, analyzing patterns of biogeography, and testing species concepts. Students and postdocs have studied the systematics and diversification of the following angiosperm families: Acanthaceae, Nyctaginaceae, Zingiberaceae, Rhamnaceae, Montiaceae, Humiriaceae, Solanaceae, Convolvulaceae, Piperaceae, and Dilleniaceae. Current research interests involve a range of evolutionary and ecological questions within the Fagaceae. For example, we have reinterpreted cupule evolution in the Fagaceae and calibrated the phylogeny for the American clades of Quercus. Ongoing collaborations with Andrew Hipp, John McVay, Andy Crowl, Antonio González-Rodríguez, and Jeannine Cavender-Bares seek to integrate phylogenetic data with phenotypic traits and functional genes to explain species distributions and to better understand the adaptive nature of introgression in the oaks. Other research interests include the phylogeography of eastern North American woody plants and the development of a research network for the southeastern flora.


  • Ph.D., Cornell University 1992

  • M.S., Rutgers University 1986

  • B.A., Drew University 1982

Hauser, Duncan A., Al Keuter, John D. McVay, Andrew L. Hipp, and Paul S. Manos. “The evolution and diversification of the red oaks of the California Floristic Province (Quercus section Lobatae, series Agrifoliae).American Journal of Botany 104, no. 10 (October 2017): 1581–95. Full Text

Fitz-Gibbon, Sorel, Andrew L. Hipp, Kasey K. Pham, Paul S. Manos, and Victoria L. Sork. “Phylogenomic inferences from reference-mapped and de novo assembled short-read sequence data using RADseq sequencing of California white oaks (Quercus section Quercus).Genome 60, no. 9 (September 2017): 743–55. Full Text

Pham, Kasey K., Andrew L. Hipp, Paul S. Manos, and Richard C. Cronn. “A time and a place for everything: phylogenetic history and geography as joint predictors of oak plastome phylogeny.Genome 60, no. 9 (September 2017): 720–32. Full Text

McVay, John D., Duncan Hauser, Andrew L. Hipp, and Paul S. Manos. “Phylogenomics reveals a complex evolutionary history of lobed-leaf white oaks in western North America.Genome 60, no. 9 (September 2017): 733–42. Full Text

McVay, John D., Andrew L. Hipp, and Paul S. Manos. “A genetic legacy of introgression confounds phylogeny and biogeography in oaks.Proceedings. Biological Sciences 284, no. 1854 (May 2017). Full Text

Yu, Yan, Qiuyun Xiang, Paul S. Manos, Douglas E. Soltis, Pamela S. Soltis, Bao-Hua Song, Shifeng Cheng, Xin Liu, and Gane Wong. “Whole-genome duplication and molecular evolution in Cornus L. (Cornaceae) - Insights from transcriptome sequences.Plos One 12, no. 2 (January 2017): e0171361. Full Text

Johnson, M. G., K. Lang, P. Manos, G. H. Golet, and K. A. Schierenbeck. “Evidence for genetic erosion of a California native tree, Platanus racemosa, via recent, ongoing introgressive hybridization with an introduced ornamental species.” Conservation Genetics 17, no. 3 (June 1, 2016): 593–602. Full Text

Cavender-Bares, Jeannine, Antonio González-Rodríguez, Deren A. R. Eaton, Andrew A. L. Hipp, Anne Beulke, and Paul S. Manos. “Phylogeny and biogeography of the American live oaks (Quercus subsection Virentes): a genomic and population genetics approach.Molecular Ecology 24, no. 14 (July 14, 2015): 3668–87. Full Text

Hipp, Andrew L., Deren A. R. Eaton, Jeannine Cavender-Bares, Elisabeth Fitzek, Rick Nipper, and Paul S. Manos. “A framework phylogeny of the American oak clade based on sequenced RAD data.Plos One 9, no. 4 (January 2014): e93975. Full Text


Selected Grants

Coastal Estuaries Under Climate Change awarded by Environmental Protection Agency (Principal Investigator). 2004 to 2005

Doctoral Dissertation: Evolution of Floral Pattern Formation in Hibbertia (Dilleniaceae) awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2001 to 2004

Doctoral Dissertation: Forest Response to Climate Change: Integrating seed dispersal models and molecular awarded by National Science Foundation (Co-Principal Investigator). 2000 to 2002

Doctoral Dissertation: Systematics and Floral Morphology Evolution in the Genus Piper (Piperaceae) awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 1999 to 2001

(97-0459) A Morphological and Molecular Investigation of Castaneoid Evolution awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 1997 to 2001

Doctoral Dissertation: Phylogenetic Relationships in the Cistaceae (Rock Roses): Insight into the Evolution of .... awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 1999 to 2001