Sören Nylin

Professor, Ecology


Department of Zoology
Stockholm University
SE-106 91 Stockholm
Sweden

+46-8-164033
FAX 167715

Soren.Nylin@zoologi.su.se


Background and career

I was born in Sundsvall, Sweden, in 1959. I moved to Stockholm in 1979 to study Biology at Stockholm University. I graduated (equivalent to MSc) in Science Education in 1985 and in Biology in 1986. I then became a PhD student at the Department of Zoology under the supervision of Christer Wiklund, and in 1991 I presented my thesis Butterfly Life History Adaptations in Seasonal Environments. Later the same year I received a research grant from the Swedish Research Council (then NFR) and could create a temporary Assistant Professor position for myself. In 1993 I earned the title of Docent, in 1998 I received a permanent Lecturer/Associate Professor position, and in 2002 I was promoted to Professor. In 2005 I became Vice Head of the Department of Zoology, and 2008-2013 I served as Head of Department. From January 1 2015 I will serve as Dean of the Biology Section of the Faculty of Science.

Teaching and supervision: During the period 1988-1995 I did extensive undergraduate teaching, including several course leaderships in e.g. Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, and organization of several new courses. Between 1995 and 2007 I acted as coordinator for PhD student courses in Ecology, Ethology and Evolution, appointed by the Section of Biology, and 2003-2007 also as leader of the Research School "Ecology, Biodiversity and the Environment". For this reason I did most of my teaching 1996-2007 at the PhD level (Introduction to research studies, Writing scientific papers, Philosophy of Science, Evolutionary Biology etc). I still give yearly lectures and courses on the practical and philosophical aspects of Science. I have supervised eight finished PhD students  (Karl Gotthard 1993-1999, Niklas Janz 1993-1999, Anders Bergström 1999-2005, Georg H. Nygren 2000-2005, Elisabet Weingartner 2001-2008, Dan Wilhelmsson 2003-2009, Matthias H. Andersson 2008-2011, Lina Söderlind 2007-2012) and have hosted several post docs, including Jack Windig, Niklas Wahlberg and Ulassa Kodandaramaiah. I currently supervise PhD student Kristin Löwenborg.

Collegial assignments: I was a member of the Editorial Board for Ecology 2001-2004, member of the Council of the European Society for Evolutionary Biology (ESEB) 2005-2009, International Vice President of the Lepidopterist's Society 2009-2010 and I’m currently Editorial Board Member for the Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera.   

 


Research interests

My current personal research project (2012-2014) is "Evolution of insect host plant utilization and life history: a hierarchical approach", funded by the Swedish Research Council (VR). I collaborate with Niklas Janz's group studying insect-plant relationships in a subproject of my broader series of projects on insect phenotypic plasticity, exploring the considerable environmental effects that the host plants have on the fitness of insects and potential links to speciation. In my research as a whole I strive for a synthesis between the host plant work and the other subprojects, which deal with areas such as effects of temperature and photoperiod on insect life histories and life cycles, connections to sexual selection, and the effects of phenotypic plasticity on speciation and extinction processes. Phylogenetic analysis is an important tool for such questions, and for this reason I am also very interested in butterfly systematics, an area in which I collaborate with Niklas Wahlberg. I'm a firm believer in the strength of combining insights from phylogenetic and experimental studies, and my projects always include both approaches.

Major research collaborations: I am one of the Principal Investigators on the Stockholm University strategic research programme EkoKlim, on the effects of climate on biodiversity and ecosystem services, and a member of the steering group. I am project leader for the new cross-biological project “Insect life cycle genomics and adaptation in the wild”, funded by the Knut & Alice Wallenberg Foundation 2013-2017, with additional funding from VR 2013-2016.

Beskrivning: Comma butterfly


What else?

I'm married to Maria and have two children born 1988 and 1990. My off-work interests include TV shows, film and reading.

 


Publications

 

Nylin, S. 1988. Host plant specialization and seasonality in a polyphagous butterfly, Polygonia c-album (Nymphalidae). Oikos 53: 381-386. Download

 

Nylin, S. 1989. Effects of changing photoperiods in the life cycle regulation of the comma butterfly, Polygonia c-album (Nymphalidae). Ecol Entomol  14: 209-218. Download

 

Nylin, S., P.-O. Wickman, and C. Wiklund 1989. Seasonal plasticity in growth and development of the speckled wood butterfly, Pararge aegeria (Satyrinae). Biol J Linn Soc  38: 155-171. Download

 

Wanntorp, H.-E., D. R. Brooks, T. Nilsson, S. Nylin, F. Ronquist, S. C. Stearns, and N. Wedell 1990. Phylogenetic approaches in ecology. Oikos  57: 119-132. Download

 

Ronquist, F., and S. Nylin 1990. Process and pattern in the evolution of species associations. Syst. Zool. 39: 323-344. Download

 

Nylin, S., and L. Svärd 1991. Latitudinal patterns in the size of European butterflies. Hol Ecol 14: 192-202 . Download

 

Wiklund, C., S. Nylin, and J. Forsberg 1991. Sex-related variation in growth rate as a result of selection for large size and protandry in a bivoltine butterfly (Pieris napi L.). Oikos 60: 241-250. Download

 

Wiklund, C., P.-O. Wickman, and S. Nylin 1992. A sex difference in reaction norms for direct/diapause development: a result of selection for protandry. Evolution 46: 519-528. Download

 

Nylin, S. 1992. Seasonal plasticity in life history traits: growth and development in Polygonia c-album (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae). Biol J Linn Soc 47: 301-323. Download

 

Nylin, S., C. Wiklund, P. O. Wickman, and E. Garciabarros 1993. Absence of trade-offs between sexual size dimorphism and early male emergence in a butterfly. Ecology 74: 1414-1427. Download

 

Nylin, S., and N. Janz 1993. Oviposition preference and larval performance in Polygonia c-album (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) - the choice between bad and worse. Ecological Entomology 18: 394-398. Download

 

Nylin, S. 1994. Seasonal plasticity and life-cycle adaptations in butterflies. Pp. 41-67 in Danks, H. V. ed. Insect Life-cycle Polymorphism. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht.

 

Nylin, S., and N. Wedell 1994. Sexual size dimorphism and comparative methods. Pp. 253-280 in Eggleton, P. and R. I. Vane-Wright eds. Phylogenetics and ecology. Academic Press, London.

 

Nylin, S., P.-O. Wickman, and C. Wiklund 1994. Genetics of development time in a butterfly: predictions from optimality and a test by subspecies crossing. Proc. R. Soc.: Biol. Sci. 257: 215-219. Download

 

Janz, N., S. Nylin, and N. Wedell 1994. Host plant utilization in the comma butterfly: sources of variation and evolutionary implications. Oecologia 99: 132-140. Download

 

Gotthard, K., S. Nylin, and C. Wiklund 1994. Adaptive variation in growth rate: life history costs and consequences in the speckled wood butterfly, Pararge aegeria. Oecologia 99: 281-289. Download

 

Nylin, S., P. O. Wickman, and C. Wiklund 1995. An adaptive explanation for male-biased sex ratios in overwintering monarch butterflies. Anim. Behav. 49: 511-514. Download

 

Nylin, S., P. O. Wickman, and C. Wiklund 1995. Life-cycle regulation and life history plasticity in the speckled wood butterfly: are reaction norms predictable? Biol. J. Linn. Soc. 55: 143-157. Download

 

Gotthard, K., and S. Nylin 1995. Adaptive plasticity and plasticity as an adaptation: a selective review of plasticity in animal morphology and life history. Oikos 74: 3-17. Download

 

Abrams, P. A., O. Leimar, S. Nylin, and C. Wiklund 1996. The effect of flexible growth rates on optimal sizes and development times in a seasonal environment. Am. Nat. 147: 381-395. Download

 

Nylin, S., K. Gotthard, and C. Wiklund 1996. Reaction norms for age and size at maturity in Lasiommata butterflies: predictions and tests. Evolution 50: 1351-1358. Download

 

Nylin, S., N. Janz, and N. Wedell 1996. Oviposition plant preference and offspring performance in the comma butterfly: correlations and conflicts. Entomol. Exp. Appl. 80: 141-144. Download

 

Nylin, S., and N. Janz 1996. Host plant preferences in the comma butterfly (Polygonia c-album): do parents and offspring agree? Ecoscience 3: 285-289. Download

 

Wedell, N., S. Nylin, and N. Janz 1997. Effects of larval host plant and sex on the propensity to enter diapause in the comma butterfly. Oikos 78: 569-575. Download

 

Janz, N., and S. Nylin 1997. The role of female search behaviour in determining host plant range in plant feeding insects: a test of the information processing hypothesis. Proc. R. Soc.: Biol. Sci. 264: 701-707. Download

 

Nylin, S., and K. Gotthard 1998. Plasticity in life history traits. Annual Review of Entomology 43: 63-83. Download

 

Janz, N., and S. Nylin 1998. Butterflies and plants: a phylogenetic study. Evolution 52: 486-502. Download

 

Nylin, S., and N. Janz 1999. Ecology and evolution of host plant range: Butterflies as a model group. Pp. 31-54 in Drent, R., V. K. Brown, and H. Olff eds. Herbivores, plants and predators. Blackwell, Oxford.

 

Gotthard, K., Nylin, S. and C. Wiklund 1999. Seasonal plasticity in two satyrine butterflies: state-dependent decision making in relation to daylength. Oikos 84: 453-462. Download

 

Gotthard, K., Nylin, S. and C. Wiklund 1999. Mating system evolution in response to search cost in the speckled wood butterfly, Pararge aegeria. Behav. Ecol. Sociobiol. 45: 424-429. Download

 

Windig, J. and Nylin, S. 1999. Adaptive asymmetry in wing size in the speckled wood butterfly, Pararge aegeria? Proc R Soc, B. 266: 1413-1418. Download

 

Gotthard, K., Nylin, S. and C. Wiklund. 2000. Mating opportunity and the evolution of sex-specific mortality rates in a butterfly. Oecologia 122: 36-43. Download

 

Windig, J. and Nylin, S. 2000. How to compare fluctuating asymmetry of different traits. J. Evol. Biol. 13: 29-37. Download

 

Gotthard, K., Nylin, S. and C. Wiklund. 2000. Individual state controls temperature dependence in a butterfly. Proc. R. Soc. B. 267: 589-593. Download

 

Nylin, S., Bergström, A. and N. Janz. 2000. Butterfly host plant choice in the face of possible confusion. J. Insect Behav. 13: 469-482. Download

 

Windig, J.J., Rintamäki, P.T., Cassel, A. and Nylin, S. 2000. How useful is fluctuating asymmetry in conservation biology: asymmetry in rare and abundant Coenonympha butterflies. J. Insect Conservation 4: 253-261. Download

 

Nylin, S. 2001. Life history perspectives on pest insects - what's the use? Australecology 26: 507-517. Download

 

Nylin, S., Nyblom, K., Ronquist, F., Janz, N., Belicek, J. and Källersjö, M. 2001. Phylogeny of Polygonia, Nymphalis and related butterflies (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae): a total-evidence analysis. Zool. J. Linn. Soc. 132: 441-468. Download

 

Cassel, A., Windig, J., Nylin, S. and Wiklund, C. 2001. Effects of population size and food stress on fitness-related characters in the Scarce Heath, Coenonympha hero (Lepidoptera, Satyrinae). Conservation Biology 15: 1667-1673. Download

 

Janz, N., Nyblom, K. and Nylin, S. 2001. Evolutionary dynamics of host plant specialization: a case study of the butterfly tribe Nymphalini. Evolution 55: 783-796. Download

 

Nylin, S., Gamberale-Stille, G. and Tullberg, B. S. 2002. Ontogeny of defence and adaptive coloration in larvae of the comma butterfly (Polygonia c-album: Nymphalidae). J. Lep. Soc. 55: 69-73. Download

 

Windig, J. and Nylin, S. 2002. Genetics of fluctuating asymmetry in pupal traits of the speckled wood butterfly (Pararge aegeria). Heredity 89: 225-234. Download

 

Gage, M.J.G., Parker, G.A., Nylin, S. and Wiklund, C. 2002. Sexual selection and speciation in mammals, butterflies and spiders. Proc. R. Soc. Biol. Sci. 269: 2309-2316. Download

 

Nylin, S. 2003. Evolutionary dynamics of host plant range in the butterfly tribe Nymphalini (Insecta, Lepidoptera, Nymphalidae). Pages 107-114 in Legakis, A., Sfenthourakis, S., Polymeni, R. & Thessalou-Legaki (eds.), The new panorama of animal evolution. Proc. 18th Int. Congr. Zool., Athens 2000.

 

Wahlberg, N., Weingartner, E. and Nylin, S. 2003. Towards a better understanding of the higher systematics of Nymphalidae (Lepidoptera: Papilionoidea). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 28: 473-484. Download

 

Wahlberg, N. and Nylin, S. 2003. Morphology versus molecules: resolution of the positions of Nymphalis, Polygonia and related genera (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae). Cladistics 19: 213-223. Download

 

Wiklund, C., Gotthard, K. and Nylin, S. 2003. Mating system and the evolution of sex-specific mortality rates in two nymphalid butterflies. Proc R Soc B. 270: 1823-1828. Download

Windig, J.J., Veerkamp, R.F. and Nylin, S. 2004. Quantitative genetic variation in an island population of the speckled wood butterfly (Pararge aegeria). Heredity 93: 450-454. Download

 

Bergström, A., Nylin, S. and Nygren, G. 2004. Conservative resource utilization in the common blue butterfly - evidence for low costs of accepting absent host plants? Oikos 107: 345-351. Download

 

Tammaru, T., Nylin, S., Ruohomäki, K and Gotthard, K. 2004. Compensatory responses in lepidopteran larvae: the role of growth rate maximisation. Oikos 107: 352-362. Download

 

Nylin, S., Nygren, G.H., Windig, J.J., Janz, N. and Bergström, A. 2005. Genetics of host plant preference in the comma butterfly and evolutionary implications. Biol. J. Linn. Soc. 84: 755-765. Download

 

Nylin, S., Gotthard, K. and Nygren, G.H. 2005. Seasonal plasticity, host plants, and the origin of butterfly biodiversity. In: Fellowes, M.D.E., Holloway, G.J. and Rolff, J. (eds.) Insect Evolutionary Ecology. CABI Publishing, Wallingford, UK. Download

Wahlberg, N., Brower, A. V. Z. and Nylin, S. 2005. Phylogenetic relationships and historical biogeography of tribes and genera in the subfamily Nymphalinae (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae). Biol. J. Linn. Soc. 86: 227-251. Download

 

Wahlberg, N., Braby, M.F., Brower, A.V.Z., de Jong, R., Ming-Min Lee, Nylin, S. Pierce, N.E. Sperling, F.A.H., Vila, R., Warren, A.D. and Zakharov, E. 2005. Phylogeny of butterflies and skippers: hidden support in molecular and morphological data sets revealed by combined analysis. Proc. R. Soc. B. 272: 1577-1586. Download

Weingartner, E., Wahlberg, N. and Nylin, S. 2006. Dynamics of host plant use and species diversity in Polygonia butterflies (Nymphalidae). J. Evol. Biol. (prepublished online Oct 2005). doi: 10.1111/j.1420-9101.2005.01009.x  Download

 

Weingartner, E. Wahlberg, N. and Nylin, S. 2006. Speciation in Pararge (Satyrinae: Nymphalidae) butterflies – North Africa is the source of ancestral populations of all Pararge species. Syst. Entomol. 31: 621-632. Download

 

Bergström, A., Janz, N. and Nylin, S. 2006. Putting more eggs in the best basket: clutch size regulation in the comma butterfly. Ecological Entomology 31:255-260. Download

 

Janz, N., Nylin, S. and Wahlberg, N. 2006. Diversity begets diversity: host expansions and the diversification of plant-feeding insects. BMC Evolutionary Biology 6:4. Download

Peña, C., Wahlberg, N., Weingartner, E.,  Kodandaramaiah, U., Nylin, S., Freitas, A.V.L. & Brower, A.V.Z. 2006. Higher level phylogeny of Satyrinae butterflies (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) based on DNA sequence data. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 40: 29-49. Download

 

Nygren, G.H., Nylin, S. & Stefanescu, C. 2006. Genetics of host plant use and life history in the comma butterfly across Europe: varying modes of inheritance as a potential reproductive barrier. J. Evol. Biol. 19: 1882-1893. Download

 

Blanckenhorn, W.U., Dixon, A.F.G., Fairbairn, D.J., Foellmer, M.W., Gibert, P., van der Linde, K., Meier, R., Nylin, S., Pitnick, S., Schoff, C., Signorelli, M., Teder, T. & Wiklund, C. 2007. Proximate causes of Rensch's rule: does sexual size dimorphism result from sex differences in development time? Am. Nat. 169: 245-257. Download

 

Esperk, T., Tammaru, T., Nylin, S. and Teder, T. 2007. Achieving high sexual dimorphism: insects add instars. Ecological Entomology 32: 243-256. Download

 

Esperk, T., Tammaru, T. and Nylin, S. 2007. Intraspecific variability in the number of larval instars in insects. J. Economic Entomol. 100:627-646. Download

 

Janz, N.  &  Nylin, S. 2008. The oscillation hypothesis of host-plant range and speciation. In: Tilmon, K.J. (Ed.). Specialization, speciation and radiation: the evolutionary biology of herbivorous insects. Pages 203-215. University of California Press, Berkeley. Download (From [Tilmon], [Specialization, Speciation, and Radiation] (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2008). To purchase a copy of this book or for permission to reproduce or reprint this material, visit www.ucpress.edu.)

 

Nylin, S. and Wahlberg, N. 2008. Does plasticity drive speciation? Host plant shifts and diversification in nymphaline butterflies (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) during the tertiary. - Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 94: 115-130. Download

 

Nygren, G.H., Bergström, A. & Nylin, S. 2008. Latitudinal body size clines in the butterfly Polyommatus icarus are shaped by gene-environment interactions. J. Insect Sci. 8:47.  Download

 

Nylin, S. & Janz, N. 2009. Butterfly host plant range: an example of plasticity as a promoter of speciation? Evol. Ecol. 23:137-146. Download

 

Janz, N., Söderlind, L. & Nylin, S. 2009. No effect of larval experience on adult host preferences in Polygonia c-album (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae): on the persistence of Hopkins' host selection principle. Ecological Entomology 34:50-57. Download

 

Wahlberg, N., Weingartner, E., Warren, A.D. and Nylin, S. 2009. Timing major conflict between mitochondrial and nuclear genes in species relationships of Polygonia butterflies (Nymphalidae: Nymphalini). BMC Evolutionary Biology 9:92. Download

 

Nylin, S., Nygren, G.H., Söderlind, L. & Stefanescu, C. 2009. Geographical variation in host plant utilization in the comma butterfly: the roles of time constraints and phenology. Evol. Ecol. 23:807-825. Download

 

Cassel-Lundhagen, A., Tammaru, T., Windig, J.J. and Nylin, S. 2009. Are peripheral populations special? Congruent patterns in two butterfly species. Ecography 32: 591-600. Download

Nylin, S. & Bergström, A. 2009. Threat status in butterflies and its ecological correlates: how far can we generalize? Biodiversity and Conservation 18: 3243-3267. Download

Nylin, S. 2009. Gradients in butterfly biology. Pp 198-216 in: Settele, J., Shreeve, T., Konvicka, M., van Dyck, H. (eds.), Ecology of butterflies in Europe. Cambridge University Press.

Heidel-Fischer, H., Freitak,  D., Janz, N., Söderlind, L., Vogel, H. & Nylin, S. 2009.  Phylogenetic relatedness and host plant growth form influence gene expression of the polyphagous comma butterfly (Polygonia c-album). BMC Genomics 10: 506. Download

Wahlberg, N., Leneveu, J., Kodandaramaiah, U., Pena, C., Nylin, S., Freitas, A.V.L. and Brower, A.V.Z. 2009. Nymphalid butterflies diversify following near demise at the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary. Proc. R. Soc. B. 276: 4295-4302. Download

Kodandaramaiah, U., Pena, C., Braby, M.F., Grund, R., Muller, C.J., Nylin, S. & Wahlberg, N. 2010. Phylogenetics of Coenonymphina and the problem of rooting rapid radiations. Mol. Phyl. Evol. 54: 386-394. Download

Pena, C., Nylin, S., Freitas, A.V.L. & Wahlberg, N. 2010. Biogeographic history of the butterfly tribe Eupthychiina (Lepidoptera, Nymphalidae, Satyrinae). Zoologica Scripta 39: 243-258. Download

Ah-King, M. and Nylin, S. 2010. Sex in an evolutionary perspective: Just another reaction norm? Evol. Biol. 37: 234-246. Download

Söderlind, L. and Nylin, S. 2011. The genetics of diapause in the comma butterfly Polygonia c-album. Physiol. Entomol. 36: 8-13. Download

Midega, C.A.O., Khan, Z.R., Picket, J.A. & Nylin, S. 2011. Host plant selection behaviour of Chilo partellus Swinhoe (Lepidoptera: Crambidae) and its implications for  effectiveness of a trap crop. Ent. Exp. Appl.  138: 40-47. Download

Peña, C., Nylin, S. & Wahlberg, N. 2011. The radiation of Satyrini butterflies (Nymphalidae: Satyrinae): a challenge for phylogenetic methods. Zool. J. Linn. Soc. 161: 64-87. Download

Kodandaramaiah, U., E. Weingartner, N. Janz, L. Dalen, and S. Nylin. 2011. Population structure in relation to host-plant ecology and Wolbachia infestation in the comma butterfly. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 24:2173-2185. Download

Mozuraitis, R., Murtazina, R., Nylin, S. and Borg-Karlson A-K. 2012. Nonvolatile chemical cues affect host-plant ranking by gravid Polygonia c-album females. Zeitschr. f. Naturforsch. C. 67:93-102. Download

 

Kodandaramaiah, U., Weingartner, E., Janz, N., Leski, M., Slove, J., Warren, A. and Nylin, S. 2012. Investigating concordance among genetic data, subspecies circumscriptions and hostplant use in the nymphalid butterfly Polygonia faunus. PLoS One 7(7): e41058. Download

 

Dalin, P. and Nylin, S. 2013. Host plant quality adaptively affects the diapause threshold: evidence from leaf beetles in willow plantations. Ecological Entomology 37: 490-499.

 

Nylin, S. 2013. Induction of diapause and seasonal morphs in butterflies and other insects: knowns, unknowns and the challenge of integration. Physiological Entomology 38: 96-104. Download

 

Celorio-Mancera, M. D., Wheat, C.W., Vogel, H., Janz, N., Nylin, S. 2013. Mechanisms of macroevolution: polyphagous plasticity in butterfly larvae revealed by RNA-Seq. Molecular Ecology 22: 4884-4895. Download

 

Nylin, S., J. Slove, N. Janz. 2014. "Host plant utilization, host range oscillations and diversification in nymphalid butterflies: a phylogenetic investigation." Evolution 68: 105-124. Download

 

Wang, H., Fan, X., Owada, M., Wang, M. and Nylin, S. 2014. Phylogeny, systematics and biogeography of the genus Panolis (Lepidoptera: Noctuideae) based on morphological and molecular evidence. PLoS One 9(3): e90598. Download

 

Gamberale-Stille, G., Söderlind, L., Janz, N. and Nylin, S. 2014. Host plant choice in the comma butterfly – larval choosiness may ameliorate effects of indiscriminate oviposition. Insect science 21: 499-506. Download


Beskrivning: Comma larva on nettle





Peer-reviewed publications outside of the Natural Sciences

Nylin, S. 2009. Mad, bad scientists and cute, curious magicians: the quest for knowledge in Buffy and the Whedonverse. Slayage: The Journal of the Whedon Studies Association 28. Download  

This paper may look strange, but I’m a serious fan of Joss Whedon’s productions (seriously), as everybody should be. FYI: The jacket I’m wearing in the picture at the top was screenworn by Harry Lennix (the character Boyd) in three episodes of Whedon’s TV show Dollhouse.

Beskrivning: Buffy is also recommended