Gene flow among incipient species can act as a creative or destructive force in the speciation process, generating variation on which natural selection can act while, potentially, undermining population divergence. The flowering plant genus Carex exhibits a rapid and relatively recent radiation with many species limits still unclear. This is the case with the Iberian Peninsula (Spain and Portugal)-endemic C. lucennoiberica, which lay unrecognized within Carex furva until its recent description as a new species. In this study, we test how these species were impacted by interspecific gene flow during speciation. We sampled the full range of distribution of C. furva (15 individuals sampled) and C. lucennoiberica (88 individuals), sequenced two cpDNA regions (atpI-atpH, psbA-trnH) and performed genomic sequencing of 45,100 SNPs using restriction site-associated DNA sequencing (RAD-seq). We utilized a set of partitioned D-statistic tests and demographic analyses to study the degree and direction of introgression. Additionally, we modelled species distributions to reconstruct changes in range distribution during glacial and interglacial periods. Plastid, nuclear and morphological data strongly support divergence between species with subsequent gene flow. Combined with species distribution modelling, these data support a scenario of allopatry leading to species divergence, followed by secondary contact and gene flow due to long-distance dispersal and/or range expansions and contractions in response to Quaternary glacial cycles. We conclude that this is a case of allopatric speciation despite historical secondary contacts, which could have temporally influenced the speciation process, contributing to the knowledge of forces that are driving or counteracting speciation.
We have been able to publish Nacho's Master Thesis. Congatulations Nacho!
It has been published in American Journal of Botany:
José I. Márquez-Corro, Marcial Escudero, Santiago Martín-Bravo, Tamara Villaverde & Modesto Luceño. 2017. Long-distance dispersal explains the bipolar disjunction in Carex macloviana (Cyperaceae). American Journal of Botany, 104, 663-673.
This a phylogeographic study of the bipolar sedge Carex macloviana.
This is the abstract of the publication:PREMISE OF THE STUDY: The sedge Carex macloviana d’Urv presents a bipolar distribution. To clarify the origin of its distribution, we consider the four main hypotheses: long-distance dispersal (either by mountain hopping or by direct dispersal), vicariance, parallel evolution, and human introduction. METHODS: Phylogenetic, phylogeographic, and divergence time estimation analyses were carried out based on two nuclear ribosomal (ETS and ITS) regions, one nuclear single copy gene (CATP), and three plastid DNA regions (rps16 and 5′trnK introns, and psbA-trnH spacer), using Bayesian inference, maximum likelihood, and statistical parsimony. Bioclimatic data were used to characterize the climatic niche of C. macloviana. KEY RESULTS: Carex macloviana constitutes a paraphyletic species, dating back to the Pleistocene (0.62 Mya, 95% highest posterior density: 0.29–1.00 Mya). This species displays strong genetic structure between hemispheres, with two different lineages in the Southern Hemisphere and limited genetic differentiation in Northern Hemisphere populations. Also, populations from the Southern Hemisphere show a narrower climatic niche with regards to the Northern Hemisphere populations. CONCLUSIONS: Carex macloviana reached its bipolar distribution by long-distance dispersal, although it was not possible to determine whether it was caused by mountain hopping or by direct dispersal. While there is some support that Carex macloviana might have colonized the Northern Hemisphere by south-to-north transhemisphere dispersal during the Pleistocene, unlike the southwards dispersal pattern inferred for other bipolar Carex L. species, we cannot entirely rule out north-to-south dispersion.
You can find the original publication here: LINK.
Two independent dispersals to the Southern Hemisphere to become the most widespread bipolar Carex species
New Publication: A clarification of the name Carex hypsipedos C.B.Clarke (Cyperaceae) and a new name for the South American Carex section Acrocystis taxon
New publications from proceedings of symposium: Phylogeny and Ecological Diversification in Carex - Botany 2015 @Edmonton - Canada
Marcial Escudero, J.I. Márquez-Corro & Andrew Hipp. 2016. The phylogenetic origins and evolutionary history of holocentric chromosomes. Systematic Botany, 41, 580-585.