Joshua P. Der

Contact Information

Office: MH 640A

Phone: 657-278-4115


Joshua P. Der

Associate Professor


PhD, Utah State University

MS, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale

BS, Humboldt State University

Research Areas

My research broadly focuses on the evolution of plant biodiversity and adaptation, including conservation, comparative genomics, population genetics, plant systematics, phylogenetics, bioinformatics, and molecular evolution. Much of my work uses CA native species, ferns and parasitic plants as study organisms.

Courses Regularly Taught

Evolution and Biodiversity (BIOL 152)

Problems in Environmental Biology (BIOL 301)

Principles of Evolution (BIOL 325)

Plant Biology (BIOL 345)

Plant Taxonomy (BIOL 441)


For a full list of Dr. Der's publications visit his Google Scholar profile.

Selected publications:

F-W Li, P Brouwer, L Carretero-Paulet, S Cheng, J de Vries, P-M Delaux, A Eily, N Koppers, L-Y Kuo, Z Li, M Simenc, I Small, E Wafula, S Angarita, MS Barker, A Braeutigam, C dePamphilis, S Gould, PS Hosmani, Y-M Huang, B Huettel, Y Kato, X Liu, S Maere, R McDowell, LA Mueller, KGJ Nierop, SA Rensing, T Robison, CJ Rothfels, EM Sigel, Y Song, PR, Y Van de Peer, H Wang, PKI Wilhelmsson, PG Wolf, X Xu, JP Der, H Schluepmann, GK-S Wong, KM Pryer.   2018. Fern genomes elucidate land plant evolution and cyanobacterial symbioses. Nature Plants, 4, 460-472. DOI: 10.1038/s41477-018-0188-8.

Marden JH, SA Mangan, M Peterson, EK Wafula, HW Fescemyer, JP Der, CW dePamphilis, LS Comita. 2017. Ecological genomics of tropical trees: how local population size and allelic diversity of resistance genes relate to immune responses, co-susceptibility to pathogens, and negative density dependence. Molecular Ecology, 26(9): 24982531. DOI: 10.1111/mec.13999.

Sessa EB, JP Der. 2016. Evolutionary Genomics of Ferns and Lycophytes. In S. A. Rensing (Ed.), Genomes and Evolution of Charophytes, Bryophytes, Lycophytes and Ferns(pp. 215-254). Academic Press. London, DOI: 10.1016/bs.abr.2016.02.001.

Naumann J, JP Der, EK Wafula, SS Jones, ST Wagner, LA Honaas, PE Ralph, JF Bolin, E Maass, C Neinhuis, S Wanke, CW dePamphilis. 2016. Detecting and characterizing the highly divergent plastid genome of the nonphotosynthetic parasitic plant Hydnora visseri (Hydnoraceae). Genome Biology and Evolution 8(1): evv256. DOI: 10.1093/gbe/evv256.

Wolf PG, EB Sessa, DB Marchant, F-W Li, CJ Rothfels, EM Sigel, MA Gitzendanner, CJ Visger, JA Banks, DE Soltis, PS Soltis, KM Pryer, JP Der. 2015. An exploration into fern genome space. Genome Biology and Evolution 7(9): 2533-2544. DOI: 10.1093/gbe/evv163.

Su, H-J, J-M Hu, FE Anderson, JP Der, DL Nickrent. 2015. Phylogenetic relationships of Santalales with insights into the origins of holoparasitic Balanophoraceae. Taxon 64(3): 491-506. DOI: 10.12705/643.2.

Wickett NJ, S Mirarab, N Nguyen, T Warnow, E Carpenter, N Matasci, S Ayyampalayam, M Barker, JG Burleigh, MA Gitzendanner, BR Ruhfel, E Wafula, JP Der, SW Graham, S Mathews, M Melkonian, DE Soltis, PS Soltis, NW Miles, CJ Rothfels, L Pokorny AJ Shaw L DeGironimo, DW Stevenson, B Surek, JC Villarreal, B Roure, H Philippe, CW dePamphilis, T Chen, MK Deyholos, RS Baucom, TM Kutchan, MM Augustin, J Wang, Y Zhang, Z Tian, Z Yan, X Wu, X Sun, GK-S Wong, J Leebens-Mack. 2014. A phylotranscriptomics analysis of the origin and early diversification of land plants. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 111(45): E4859-E4868. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1323926111.

Amborella Genome Project. 2013. The Amborella Genome and the Evolution of Flowering Plants. Science 342(6165): 1241089–1241089. DOI: 10.1126/science.1241089.

Campbell T, JP Der, PG Wolf, E Packenham, NH Abd-Hamid. 2012. Scientific Inquiry in the Genetics Laboratory: Biologists and University Science Teacher Educators Collaborating to Increase Engagement in Science Processes. Journal of College Science Teaching 41(3): 74–81.

Twitter: @DocDer