Journal of Molecular Evolution

, Volume 32, Issue 5, pp 443–445 | Cite as

On the maximum likelihood method in molecular phylogenetics

  • Masami Hasegawa
  • Hirohisa Kishino
  • Naruya Saitou


The efficiency of obtaining the correct tree by the maximum likelihood method (Felsenstein 1981) for inferring trees from DNA sequence data was compared with trees obtained by distance methods. It was shown that the maximum likelihood method is superior to distance methods in the efficiency particularly when the evolutionary rate differs among lineages.

Key words

Efficiency Maximum likelihood method Methods for inferring trees DNA sequence data 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Masami Hasegawa
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hirohisa Kishino
    • 1
    • 2
  • Naruya Saitou
    • 3
  1. 1.The Institute of Statistical MathematicsThe Graduate University for Advanced StudiesTokyoJapan
  2. 2.Department of Statistical ScienceThe Graduate University for Advanced StudiesTokyoJapan
  3. 3.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of TokyoTokyoJapan

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