James Bever

Distinguished Foundation Professor in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and
Senior Scientist, Kansas Biological Survey
Ph.D., Duke University, 1992
Primary office:
Higuchi Hall


Dr. Bever's research focuses on testing basic ecological and evolutionary processes occurring within plants and their associated fungi.

Much of the conceptual basis of ecology and evolution was developed with animals in mind.  Plants and fungi differ from animals in important ways, including their motility, their nutrient acquisition systems and their genetic systems.  Conceptual frameworks building on these peculiarities can be very useful in exploring the dynamics of population and communities of plants and fungi.  Developing, testing, and exploring the implications of these models has been the goal of my work.

Selected Publications

  Abbott, K.C., J. Karst, L.A. Biederman, S.R. Borrett, A. Hastings, V. Walsh, and J.D. Bever.  2015. Spatial heterogenity in soil microbes alters outcomes of plant competition.  PLoS One 10(5): e0125788.  doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0125788.

Cheeke, T.E., U.M. Schutte, C.M. Hemmerich, M.B. Cruzan, T.N. Rosenstiel, and J.D. Bever.  2015. Spatial soil heterogeneity has a greater effect on symbiotic arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities and plant growth than modification with Bacillus thuringiensis tox genes.  Molecular Ecology 24(10): 2580-93.  doi 10.1111/mec.13178.

Bever, J.D. 2015. Preferential allocation, physio-evolutionary feedbacks, and the stability and environmental patterns of mutualism between plants and their root symbionts.  New Phytol. 205(4): 1503-14. doil: 10.1111/nph.13239.

Zhen, C., J. B. Ji, J. Zhang, F. Zhang, and J.D. Bever. 2015.  Shading decreases plant carbon preferential allocation towards the most benefical mycorrhizal mutualist. New Phytol. 205(1): 361-8.  doi:  10.1111/nph.13025.

Platt, T.G., E.R. Morton, I.S. Barton, J.D. Bever, and C. Fuqua.  2014. Ecological dynamics and complex interactions of Agrobacterium megaplasmids.  Front Plant Science 14;5:635. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2014.00635. 

Mack, K.M. and J. D. Bever.  2014.  Coexistence and relative abundance in plant communities are determined by feedbacks when the scale of feedback and dispersal is local. Journal of Ecology 102(5): 1195-1201.

   Poisot, T. J. D. Bever, P. H. Thrall, M. Hochberg. 2014.  When protection is not enough--emergence and persistence of protective mutualists in pathogenic communities.  Ecology and Evolution 19: 3841-50.  doi: 10.1002/ece3.1151.

Mack, K.M.L. and J.D. Bever.  2014.  Strength of feedback determines relative abundance in plant communities.  Theoretical considerations of the scale of dispersal and the scale and strength of feedback.  Journal of Ecology.  doi:  10.1111/1365-2745.12269

Larimer, A.L., K. Clay, and J.D. Bever.  2014.  Synergism and context dependency of interactions between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and rhizobia with a prairie legume.  Ecology 95(4): 1045-54. 

Steidenger, B.S. and J. D. Bever.  2014.  The coexistence of hosts with different abilities to discriminate against cheater partner: an evolutionary game theory approach to the stability of cheating and mutualisms.  American Naturalist 183: 762-770.

Cheeke, T.E., H. Darby, T.N. Rosenstiel, J.D. Bever, and M. B. Cruzan.  2014.  Effect of Bt maize cultivation on arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal colonization, spore abundance and diversity, and plant growth.  Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment.  195: 29-35.

Zee, P.C. and J. D. Bever. 2014. Joint evolution of kin recognition and cooperation in spatially structured rhizobium populations.  PLOS ONE 9:395141.
Larimer, A., K. Clay, and J. D. Bever. 2014.  Synergism and context dependency of interactions between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and rhizobia with a prairie legume.  Ecology 95: 1045-1054.

Morton, E. R. T. G. Platt, C. Fuqua, and J. D. Bever. 2014.  Non-additive costs and interactions alter the competitive dynamics of co-occurring ecologically distinct plasmids.  Proceedings of the Royal Society of London.  281: 20132173.

Morton, E.R., J. D. Bever, and C. Fuqua.  2013.  Large deletions in the pAtC58 megaplasmid of Agrobacterium tumefaciens can confer reduced carriage cost and increased virulence.  Genome Biology and Evolution. 7:13353-1364.

Bever, J.D., L.M. Broadhurst, and P.H. Thrall. 2013.  Microbial phylotype composition and diversity predicts plant productivity and plant-soil feedback.  Ecology Letters 16(2): 167-74.  doil: 10.1111/ele.12024.

Koziol, L. L.H. Rieseberg, N. Kane, and J.D. Bever.  2012.  Reduced drought tolerance during demestication and the evolution of weediness results from tolerance-growth trade-offs.  Evolution 66(12): 3803-14.  doi: 10.1111/j.1558-5646.2012.01718.x.Epub 2012.

Duchicela, J. K.M. Vogelsang, P.A. Schultz, W. Kaonongbua, E.L. Middleton, and J.D. Bever.  2012.  Non-native plants and soil microbes:  potential contributors to the consistent reduction in soil aggregate stability caused by the disturbance of North American grasslands.  New Phytol. 196(1): 212-22.  doi: 10.1111/j.1469-8137.

Bever, J.D., T.G. Platt, and E.R. Morton.  2012.  Microbial population and community dynamics on plant roots and their feedbacks on plant communities.  Annual Review Microbial 66: 265-83.  doil:  10.1146/annurev-micro-092611-150107.

Bauer, J.D., N.M. Kleczewski, J.D. Bever, K. Clay, and H.L. Reynolds. 2012.  Nitrogen-fixing bacteria, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, and the productivity and structure of prairie grassland communities.  Oecologia 170(4): 1089-98.  doi:  10.1007/s00442-012-2363-3.

Platt, T.G., C. Fuqua, and J.D. Bever.  2012.  Resource and competitive dynamics shape the benefits of public good cooperation in a plant pathogen.  Evolution 66(6): 1953-65.  doi: 10.1111/j.1558-5646.2011.01571.x.Epub 2012.

Johnson, D.J. W.T. Beaulieu, J.D. Bever, and K. Clay.  2012.  Conspecific negative density dependence and forest diversity.  Science 18:336(6083):904-7.  doi: 10.1126/science.1220269.PMID: 22605774.

Platt, T.G., J.D. Bever, and C. Fuqua.  2012.  A cooperative virulence plasmid imposes a high fitness cost under conditions that induce pathogenesis.  Proceedings of Biological Sciences. 279(1734): 1691-9.  doi: 10.1098/respb.2011.


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