Biodiversity    Systematics   Evolution

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© Copyright

I am an entomologist interested in studies with a focus on taxonomy, phylogenetic systematics, historical biogeography, geometric morphometry and biological conservation, and I use the Coleoptera order as a model group, although I am also interested in applying the analytical tools of these disciplines to other groups of organisms.

My study group, the order Coleoptera, is the most diverse taxon in the animal kingdom, with great ecological and economic importance since they intervene in almost all processes, and have a great impact on anthropogenic activities, both negative (pests) and positive (pollination, food, etc.).

I am especially interested in: exploring little studied areas of the Mexican Republic to have a better knowledge of the national biodiversity; making contributions in taxonomy such as the review of groups and description of taxa; addressing evolutionary studies through phylogenetic inference; the formation of a reference scientific collection; distribution and photographic databases for Geometric Morphometry analysis; and tissue collection for DNA studies.

RESEARCH

Coleoptera 

Scarabaeoidea

Escarabajos

Evolución

Taxonomía

Sistemática filogenética

Morfometría geométrica

Conservación biológica

Coleoptera 

Scarabaeoidea

Scarab beetles

Evolution

Taxonomy

Phylogenetic Systematics

Geometric Morphometrics

Biological Conservation​

BIODIVERSITY AND BIOLOGICAL CONSERVATION

More than 1.5 million species have been described, named and organized in a global reference system known as biological classification, but it is estimated that there are close to 9 million, that is, we do not know at least 85% of the diversity, which is the result of more than 4 thousand million years of evolution. The science that organizes life is called Systematics, and the discipline that safeguards the rules for naming these species is Taxonomy.


Taxonomists focus on the discovery, description, naming, identification and classification of organisms, motivated by the exploration of characters and species, their diversity and causes, and to know the evolutionary relationships of groups, whose ultimate goal is a phylogenetic classification, that is, the general biological reference system.
This system hierarchically reflects the evolutionary process that involves divergent speciation events, where organisms, genomes and characters exhibit nested patterns and are considered as theories of the natural order that serve to predict properties and elucidate evolutionary mechanisms.


The recognition of species, the functional evolutionary units is essential for the study and monitoring of biodiversity in order to understand biological processes, prioritize biological conservation and restoration, as well as for the detection of harmful and / or invasive species.

 TAXONOMY, PHYLOGENETICS AND BIOGEOGRAPHY

The state of the environment and its biodiversity is of considerable importance for the maintenance of life on the planet as it provides us with resources (food, fuels, etc.), regulation (climate, erosion, pollination, etc.), support (primary productivity, recycling of nutrients, etc.), and cultural (aesthetic, recreational, etc.).

Currently, the deterioration of ecosystems in the world is a serious problem since it has severe impacts on various sectors such as the economy, society, public health, etc. We are part of the biodiversity but also the main factor of environmental degradation. 

 

For this reason we have an enormous responsibility to our society, to future generations and for all other forms of life with which we cohabit. We have established an interdependent relationship with the evolutionary process and must take measures to mitigate damage to ecosystems and at the same time, implement strategies to restore damaged areas.


That is why the study of ecosystems and biodiversity is a priority activity since it allows us to know its components and characteristics and thus, plan appropriate strategies for its restoration and protection, elements that must be appropriate for the place in question, and for the interests of the region and the inhabitants who make use of local resources.
 

EVOLUTIONARY ANALYSIS WITH GEOMETRIC MORPHOMETRY

The extraordinary morphological variation and complexity that species exhibit as a product of the evolutionary process has amazed naturalists and scientists for centuries, and has permeated the development of many disciplines, from the recognition and delimitation of species, classification criteria, phylogenetic inference, the theory of natural and sexual selection, genetics, evolutionary developmental biology, ecomorphology, biomechanics, etc.


For centuries, the analysis of morphology has been a cornerstone in the study of evolution; from biological classification to understanding biological diversity they have been based on morphological description.


The study of shape has become a rigorous quantitative discipline known as morphometry, which after a conceptual and analytical revolution, led to Geometric Morphometry, which is a set of statistical techniques and computer generated illustrations to characterize and quantify the variation of biological forms.


I am interested in studying the origin and evolution of phenotypic variation and related processes which are important to obtain information about the mechanisms that originate and promote morphological diversification. Geometric Morphometry is currently linked with other disciplines such as Ecology and Genetics to learn how the environment and development processes interact.

INSTITUTO DE BIOLOGÍA

UNAM

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UNIVERSIDAD NACIONAL

AUTÓNOMA DE MÉXICO