Wikiomics:Building phylogenetic trees

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For a excellent background on Wikiomics:Phylogenetics see the relevant Phylogenetics and computational phylogenetics articles at Wikipedia. Joe Felsenstein maintains a rather complete list of phylogeny software.

  • Phylip a free package of programs for inferring phylogenies. Methods that are available in the package include parsimony, distance matrix, and likelihood methods, including bootstrapping and consensus trees. Data types that can be handled include molecular sequences, gene frequencies, restriction sites and fragments, distance matrices, and discrete characters.
  • MrBayes is a program for the Bayesian estimation of phylogeny. Bayesian inference of phylogeny is based upon a quantity called the posterior probability distribution of trees, which is the probability of a tree conditioned on the observations. The conditioning is accomplished using Bayes's theorem. The posterior probability distribution of trees is impossible to calculate analytically; instead, MrBayes uses a simulation technique called Markov chain Monte Carlo (or MCMC) to approximate the posterior probabilities of trees.