James Frederick Fleming

Postdoctoral Fellow - Frontiers in Evolutionary Zoology
Image of James Frederick Fleming
Norwegian version of this page
Visiting address Sars gate 1 Colletts hus 0318 Oslo
Postal address Postboks 1172 0316 Oslo

Tasks performed

As a postdoctoral researcher within FEZ, James' tasks include:

  • Developing new methodologies to better ameliorate phylogenetic reconstruction artifacts. 
  • Better understanding the phylogenetic relationships of Lophotrochozoa.
  • Collaborating with other groups with related interests to share methods, information and results.


James completed his PhD at Bristol University in 2014, studying the evolution of the visual protein opsin across animal life, with a particular focus on ecdysozoans: the group of animals that includes insects, crustaceans and tardigrades.

Following this, he obtained a JSPS postdoctoral fellowship at Keio University Institute of Advanced Biosciences in Japan, where he worked on the evolution of terrestrialisation in tardigrades.

James' research interests broadly revolve around protein evolution and the evolution of major transitions, particularly within the invertebrates. To accomplish this, he uses a range of molecular and fossil-informed strategies and methodologies, and is also interested in the development of new methodologies to tackle the problems that occur when using these tools, such as long branch attraction and compositional heterogeneity.


Selected publications

Fleming, J.F., Feuda, R., Roberts, N.W. and Pisani, D., 2020. A Novel Approach to Investigate the Effect of Tree Reconstruction Artifacts in Single-Gene Analysis Clarifies Opsin Evolution in Nonbilaterian Metazoans. Genome biology and evolution12(2), pp.3906-3916.

Fleming, J.F., Kristensen, R.M., Sørensen, M.V., Park, T.Y.S., Arakawa, K., Blaxter, M., Rebecchi, L., Guidetti, R., Williams, T.A., Roberts, N.W. and Vinther, J., 2018. Molecular palaeontology illuminates the evolution of ecdysozoan vision. Proceedings of the Royal Society B285(1892), p.20182180.

Lozano-Fernandez, J., Giacomelli, M., Fleming, J.F., Chen, A., Vinther, J., Thomsen, P.F., Glenner, H., Palero, F., Legg, D.A., Iliffe, T.M. and Pisani, D., 2019. Pancrustacean evolution illuminated by taxon-rich genomic-scale data sets with an expanded remipede sampling. Genome biology and evolution11(8), pp.2055-2070.

Puttick, M.N., O'Reilly, J.E., Tanner, A.R., Fleming, J.F., Clark, J., Holloway, L., Lozano-Fernandez, J., Parry, L.A., Tarver, J.E., Pisani, D. and Donoghue, P.C., 2017. Uncertain-tree: discriminating among competing approaches to the phylogenetic analysis of phenotype data. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences284(1846), p.20162290.

O'Reilly, J.E., Puttick, M.N., Parry, L., Tanner, A.R., Tarver, J.E., Fleming, J., Pisani, D. and Donoghue, P.C., 2016. Bayesian methods outperform parsimony but at the expense of precision in the estimation of phylogeny from discrete morphological data. Biology letters12(4), p.20160081.

Published Dec. 15, 2020 1:53 PM - Last modified Jan. 7, 2021 10:43 AM