[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Due to its special geological history, the New Caledonian Archipelago is a mosaic of soil types, and in combination with climatic conditions this results in a heterogeneous environment across relatively small distances. A group of over 20 endemic species of Diospyros (Ebenaceae) has rapidly and recently radiated on the archipelago after a single long-distance dispersal event. Most of the Diospyros species in the radiating group are morphologically and ecologically well differentiated, but they exhibit low levels of DNA variability. To investigate the processes that shaped the diversification of this group we employed restriction site associated DNA sequencing (RADseq). Over 8,400 filtered SNPs generally confirm species delimitations and produce a well-supported phylogenetic tree. Our analyses document local introgression, but only a limited potential for gene flow over longer distances. The phylogenetic relationships point to an early regional clustering among populations and species, indicating that allopatric speciation with respect to macrohabitat (i.e., climatic conditions) may have had a role in the initial differentiation within the group. A later, more rapid radiation involved divergence with respect to microhabitat (i.e., soil preference). Several sister species in the group show a parallel divergence in edaphic preference. Searches for genomic regions that are systematically differentiated in this replicated phenotypic divergence pointed to loci potentially involved in ion binding and cellular transport. These loci appear meaningful in the context of adaptations to soil types that differ in heavy-metal and mineral content. Identical nucleotide changes affected only two of these loci, indicating that introgression may have played a limited role in their evolution. Our results suggest that both allopatric diversification and (parapatric) ecological divergence shaped successive rounds of speciation in the Diospyros radiation on New Caledonia.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: It is argued that a broad and expanded circumscription of Maxillaria is to be preferred over a narrower one that
necessitates the recognition of many segregate genera. These more narrowly circumscribed genera are often difficult to diagnose, increasing the risk of misidentifications, especially when material is only identified to genus level. The genera of the Maxillaria alliance as recognised in Genera orchidacearum are treated as sections of an expanded genus Maxillaria. Cryptocentrum, Cyrtidiorchis, Mormolyca, Pityphyllum, and Trigonidium are here included in Maxillaria. Criteria for generic delimitation are discussed, the necessary combinations are made, and a key to the sections as well as a provisional checklist of the 634 species of Maxillaria arranged according to section are provided. Maxillaria prolifera is shown to be the correct name for M. pendens. Maxillaria humilis is a new combination for M. gracilis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: High-throughput sequencing data have transformed molecular phylogenetics and a plethora of phylogenomic approaches are now readily available. Shotgun sequencing at low genome coverage is a common approach for isolating high-copy DNA, such as the plastid or mitochondrial genomes, and ribosomal DNA. These sequence data, however, are also rich in repetitive elements that are often discarded. Such data include a variety of repeats present throughout the nuclear genome in high copy number. It has recently been shown that the abundance of repetitive elements has phylogenetic signal and can be used as a continuous character to infer tree topologies. In the present study, we evaluate repetitive DNA data in tomatoes (Solanum section Lycopersicon) to explore how they perform at the inter- and intraspecific levels, utilizing the available data from the 100 Tomato Genome Sequencing Consortium. The results add to previous examples from angiosperms where genomic repeats have been used to resolve phylogenetic relationships at varying taxonomic levels. Future prospects now include the use of genomic repeats for population-level analyses and phylogeography, as well as potentially for DNA barcoding.
Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 07/2015; DOI:10.1111/bij.12612 · 2.26 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recently, DNA barcoding has emerged as an effec- tive tool for species identification. This has the poten- tial for many useful applications in conservation, such as biodiversity inventories, forensics and trade sur- veillance. It is being developed as an inexpensive and rapid molecular technique using short and standard- ized DNA sequences for species identification.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Conservation biologists have only finite resources, and so must prioritise some species over others. The EDGE-listing approach ranks species according to their combined evolutionary distinctiveness and degree of threat, but ignores the uncertainty surrounding both threat and evolutionary distinctiveness. We develop a new family of measures for species, which we name EDAM, that incorporates evolutionary distinctiveness, the magnitude of decline, and the accuracy with which decline can be predicted. Further, we show how the method can be extended to explore phyogenetic uncertainty. Using the vascular plants of Britain as a case study, we find that the various EDAM measures emphasise different species and parts of Britain, and that phylogenetic uncertainty can strongly affect the prioritisation scores of some species.
PLoS ONE 05/2015; 10(5):e0126524. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0126524 · 3.23 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Since its launch in 2009 Phytotaxa has grown to be the leading journal in taxonomic botany, publishing the greatest number of articles, pages, and new names. It has replaced Taxon as the top journal by volume and total citation to current papers but not impact factor. More than just a journal, Phytotaxa has made it easier for authors to publish in botanical taxonomy and has improved access to publication for disadvantaged authors. This is reflected in it gaining ‘market share’ from biodiversity-rich BRIC countries, which have invested in their taxonomic capacity. It could also reflect a shift away from Europe & US as main descriptors of plant diversity. We believe that Phytotaxa has been well accepted by the taxonomic community because it is free at point of publication (barrier-free to authors of all income brackets), flexible (unlimited issues and pages) and rapidly indexed with an impact factor that is relatively high for a taxonomic journal. Phytotaxa thus meets the needs of the broadest group of taxonomists who survive based on publication number and impact factor, and who do not have access to funds to support open-access publication. We suggest that it is eminently feasible to fully describe and typify all plant diversity using the Linnean system, but that do so in a timely manner and so meet Society’s needs in the face of the mass-extinction of biodiversity and climate change. Phytotaxa will work with all taxonomists to continue to promote taxonomy as a scientific discipline.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A large proportion of genomic information, particularly repetitive elements, is usually ignored when researchers are using
next-generation sequencing. Here we demonstrate the usefulness of this repetitive fraction in phylogenetic analyses, utilizing
comparative graph-based clustering of next-generation sequence reads, which results in abundance estimates of different classes
of genomic repeats. Phylogenetic trees are then inferred based on the genome-wide abundance of different repeat types treated
as continuously varying characters; such repeats are scattered across chromosomes and in angiosperms can constitute a majority
of nuclear genomic DNA. In six diverse examples, five angiosperms and one insect, this method provides generally well-supported
relationships at interspecific and intergeneric levels that agree with results from more standard phylogenetic analyses of
commonly used markers. We propose that this methodology may prove especially useful in groups where there is little genetic
differentiation in standard phylogenetic markers. At the same time as providing data for phylogenetic inference, this method
additionally yields a wealth of data for comparative studies of genome evolution.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent molecular phylogenetic studies in Chrysobalanaceae as well as new analyses presented in this study cast doubt on the monophyly of the three largest genera in the family, Couepia, Hirtella and Licania. Couepia, a Neotropical genus, had species appearing in four separate clades, the majority of species sequenced, however, form a highly supported clade, referred to here as core Couepia (including the type species). These results lend support to a revised taxonomy of the genus, and to resolve Couepia as monophyletic the following taxonomic changes are here proposed: Couepia recurva should be transferred to Hirtella, C. platycalyx transferred to Licania, C. longipendula and C. dolichopoda transferred to Acioa, and a new genus, Gaulettia, is proposed to accommodate species of the Gaulettia clade and allies.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Similar to other species-rich taxa in the Indo-Australian Archipelago, taxonomy of the genus Aglaia (mahogany family, Meliaceae) remains problematic. This study aims to evaluate taxonomic concepts within Aglaia based on the largest dataset to-date. We analyzed sequences of 237 accessions of Aglaia and representatives of all other genera of the tribe Aglaieae, including nuclear ribosomal ITS, the trnL-trnF intron and intergenic spacer, the atpF intron and the petD region comprising the petB-petD spacer, the petD-5' exon and the petD intron (all but the first from the plastid genome). Our analyses were set both in maximum likelihood and Bayesian frameworks, which (1) supported paraphyly of Aglaia and Aphanamixis; (2) demonstrated polyphyly of previously described sections for Aglaia; and (3) suggested delimitation problems with of 57% of the morphologically "variable species" and all "complex species". In general, there were more genetic entities than species described, which shows that the taxonomy of this group is more complex than has sometimes been previously assumed. For some species, morphological variation suggests the existence of more variants, subspecies or species within various taxa. Furthermore, our study detected additional phylogenetic entities that were geographically distinct, occurring on either side of Wallace's Line but not on both sides. The delineation of these inter-specific taxa needs further investigation by taking into account the morphological variation within and between populations across the entire distribution.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background and AimsThroughout the history of fern classification, familial and generic concepts have been highly labile. Many classifications and evolutionary schemes have been proposed during the last two centuries, reflecting different interpretations of the available evidence. Knowledge of fern structure and life histories has increased through time, providing more evidence on which to base ideas of possible relationships, and classification has changed accordingly. This paper reviews previous classifications of ferns and presents ideas on how to achieve a more stable consensus.ScopeAn historical overview is provided from the first to the most recent fern classifications, from which conclusions are drawn on past changes and future trends. The problematic concept of family in ferns is discussed, with a particular focus on how this has changed over time. The history of molecular studies and the most recent findings are also presented.Key ResultsFern classification generally shows a trend from highly artificial, based on an interpretation of a few extrinsic characters, via natural classifications derived from a multitude of intrinsic characters, towards more evolutionary circumscriptions of groups that do not in general align well with the distribution of these previously used characters. It also shows a progression from a few broad family concepts to systems that recognized many more narrowly and highly controversially circumscribed families; currently, the number of families recognized is stabilizing somewhere between these extremes. Placement of many genera was uncertain until the arrival of molecular phylogenetics, which has rapidly been improving our understanding of fern relationships. As a collective category, the so-called 'fern allies' (e.g. Lycopodiales, Psilotaceae, Equisetaceae) were unsurprisingly found to be polyphyletic, and the term should be abandoned. Lycopodiaceae, Selaginellaceae and Isoëtaceae form a clade (the lycopods) that is sister to all other vascular plants, whereas the whisk ferns (Psilotaceae), often included in the lycopods or believed to be associated with the first vascular plants, are sister to Ophioglossaceae and thus belong to the fern clade. The horsetails (Equisetaceae) are also members of the fern clade (sometimes inappropriately called 'monilophytes'), but, within that clade, their placement is still uncertain. Leptosporangiate ferns are better understood, although deep relationships within this group are still unresolved. Earlier, almost all leptosporangiate ferns were placed in a single family (Polypodiaceae or Dennstaedtiaceae), but these families have been redefined to narrower more natural entities.Conclusions
Concluding this paper, a classification is presented based on our current understanding of relationships of fern and lycopod clades. Major changes in our understanding of these families are highlighted, illustrating issues of classification in relation to convergent evolution and false homologies. Problems with the current classification and groups that still need study are pointed out. A summary phylogenetic tree is also presented. A new classification in which Aspleniaceae, Cyatheaceae, Polypodiaceae and Schizaeaceae are expanded in comparison with the most recent classifications is presented, which is a modification of those proposed by Smith et al. (2006, 2008) and Christenhusz et al. (2011). These classifications are now finding a wider acceptance and use, and even though a few amendments are made based on recently published results from molecular analyses, we have aimed for a stable family and generic classification of ferns.
Annals of Botany 02/2014; 113(4). DOI:10.1093/aob/mct299 · 3.65 Impact Factor