Andreas Wagner has a new paper on analyzing influenza sequence data using a super simple Hamming-distance network-based approach.
He ends up with plots like:
Fundamentally non-phylogenetic, this approach doesn't try to reconstruct evolutionary history, but instead shows a simple overview of genetic relationships. Andreas suggests that these graphs make it easy to detect convergent evolution that would not be apparent in the strictly branching tree.
I don't have a good intuition for how these sorts of graphs translate to trees and vice versa. Does this seem like it's a useful addition to constructing a tree or more of a distraction?