[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Hawaiian Drosophila offer a unique opportunity to examine evolutionary questions because of the known ages of the Hawaiian Islands and the large number of species endemic to this archipelago. One of the more well studied groups of Hawaiian Drosophila is the planitibia species group, a long-standing population genetic model system. Here we present a molecular phylogenetic hypothesis of all 17 taxa in the planitibia group based on nucleotide sequences from two mitochondrial (16S and COII) and four nuclear (Adh, Gpdh, Yp1, and Yp2) loci, accounting for over 4kb of sequence per taxon. We use these data to estimate major divergence times within this group. Our results suggest that the basal diversification within this group, calculated at 6.1 +/- 0.47 MY, predates the oldest high island of Kauai. The older diversifications in this group took place on Kauai, with subsequent colonization and speciation events occurring as new islands became available to Drosophila. Understanding of the phylogenetic relationships of this important group will place the existing population genetic work in a macroevolutionary context and stimulate additional work, particularly on those taxa endemic to the Maui Nui complex of islands.
Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 11/2005; 37(1):73-82. · 4.07 Impact Factor