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

Burge, Dylan O., Robin Hopkins, Yi-Hsin Erica Tsai, and Paul S. Manos. “Limited hybridization across an edaphic disjunction between the gabbro-endemic shrub Ceanothus roderickii (Rhamnaceae) and the soil-generalist Ceanothus cuneatus.American Journal of Botany 100, no. 9 (September 9, 2013): 1883–95. Full Text

Kremer, A., A. G. Abbott, J. E. Carlson, P. S. Manos, C. Plomion, P. Sisco, M. E. Staton, S. Ueno, and G. G. Vendramin. “Genomics of Fagaceae.” Tree Genetics and Genomes 8, no. 3 (June 1, 2012): 583–610. Full Text

Burge, D. O., D. M. Erwin, M. B. Islam, J. Kellermann, S. W. Kembel, D. H. Wilken, and P. S. Manos. “Diversification of Ceanothus (Rhamnaceae) in the California Floristic province.” International Journal of Plant Sciences 172, no. 9 (November 1, 2011): 1137–64. Full Text

Burge, D. O., and P. S. Manos. “Edaphic ecology and genetics of the gabbro-endemic shrub Ceanothus roderickii (Rhamnaceae).Madroño 58 (2011): 1–21.

Tsai, Yi-Hsin Erica, and Paul S. Manos. “Host density drives the postglacial migration of the tree parasite, Epifagus virginiana.Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 107, no. 39 (September 14, 2010): 17035–40. Full Text

Stone, D. E., S. H. Oh, E. A. Tripp, L. E. Ros G, and P. S. Manos. “Natural history, distribution, phylogenetic relationships, and conservation of Central American black walnuts (Juglans sect. Rhysocaryon).” Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society 136, no. 1 (January 1, 2009): 1–25. Full Text

Tripp, Erin A., and Paul S. Manos. “Is floral specialization an evolutionary dead-end? Pollination system transitions in Ruellia (Acanthaceae).Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution 62, no. 7 (July 2008): 1712–37. Full Text

Willson, Cynthia J., Paul S. Manos, and Robert B. Jackson. “Hydraulic traits are influenced by phylogenetic history in the drought-resistant, invasive genus Juniperus (Cupressaceae).American Journal of Botany 95, no. 3 (March 2008): 299–314. Full Text