This pioneering Population Genomics Series deals with the concepts, strategies, and approaches of population genomics and their applications in a wide variety of organisms. Population genomics is a fast emerging discipline of genomics, which has revolutionized the fields of population biology, ecology, evolution, and conservation, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, and human health.
Population genomics is an outcome of these advances, which is a fascinating and fast-growing discipline. Population genomics has revolutionized various disciplines of biology including plant and animal breeding, human health, genetic medicine, and pharmacology by allowing to address novel and long-standing intractable questions with unprecedented power and accuracy. It employs large-scale or genome-wide genetic information and bioinformatics to address various fundamental and applied aspects in biology and related disciplines, and provides a comprehensive genome-wide perspective and new insights that were not possible before.
Population genomics has provided novel conceptual approaches and is tremendously advancing our understanding the roles of evolutionary processes, such as mutation, genetic drift, gene flow, and natural selection, in shaping up genetic variation at individual loci and across the genome and populations, disentangling the locus-specific effects from the genome-wide effects, detecting and localizing the functional genomic elements, improving the assessment of population genetic parameters or processes such as adaptive evolution, effective population size, gene flow, admixture, inbreeding and outbreeding depression, demography, biogeography, and resolving evolutionary histories and phylogenetic relationships of extant species and between living and extinct species. Population genomics research is also providing key insights into the genomic basis of fitness, ecological and climate acclimation and adaptation, speciation, complex ecologically and economically important traits, and disease and insect resistance in plants, animals and/or humans. In fact, population genomics research has enabled the identification of genes and genetic variants causing or associated with many disease conditions in humans, and is facilitating genetic medicine and pharmacology. Furthermore, population genomics is facilitating forensics, delineating conservation genetic units, understanding the genetic impacts of resource management practices, and assisting conservation and sustainable management of plant and animal genetic resources.