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Intercontinental disjunctions in Cryptotaenia (Apiaceae, Oenantheae): an appraisal using molecular data

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Abstract Aim 

The angiosperm genus Cryptotaenia (family Apiaceae, tribe Oenantheae) exhibits an anomalous distribution pattern, with five of its eight species being narrow endemics geographically isolated from their presumed relatives. We examined the monophyly of the genus and ascertained the phylogenetic placements of its constituent members in order to explain their distribution patterns. Location 

Eastern North America, eastern Asia, the Caucasus, southern Italy, Macaronesia and Africa. Methods 

In total, 173 accessions were examined for nuclear rDNA ITS sequence variation, representing nearly all major lineages of Apiaceae subfamily Apioideae and seven species of Cryptotaenia. Sampling of tribes Oenantheae, Scandiceae and Pimpinelleae was comprehensive. Phylogenetic analyses included Bayesian, maximum parsimony and neighbour-joining methods; biogeographical scenarios were inferred using dispersal–vicariance analysis (diva). Results 

Cryptotaenia is polyphyletic and includes three distant lineages. (1) Cryptotaenia sensu stricto (C. canadensis, C. japonica, C. flahaultii and C. thomasii) is maintained within tribe Oenantheae; C. canadensis and C. japonica, representing an eastern North American–eastern Asian disjunction pattern, are confirmed to be sister species. (2) Cryptotaenia elegans, endemic to the Canary Islands, is placed within Scandiceae subtribe Daucinae along with two woody endemics of Madeira, Monizia edulis and Melanoselinum decipiens. The phylogeny of these Canarian and Madeiran endemics is unresolved. Either they constitute a monophyletic sister group to a clade comprising some Mediterranean and African species of Daucus and their relatives, or they are paraphyletic to this clade. The herbaceous/woody genus Tornabenea from Cape Verde, once included in Melanoselinum, is not closely related to the other Macaronesian endemics but to Daucus carota. (3) The African members of Cryptotaenia (C. africana, C. calycina and possibly C. polygama) comprise a clade with some African and Madagascan umbellifers; this entire clade is sister group to Eurasian Pimpinella. Main conclusions 

Elucidating the phylogeny of the biogeographically anomalous Cryptotaenia sensu lato enabled hypotheses on the biogeography of its constituent lineages. Cryptotaenia sensu stricto exhibits a holarctic distribution pattern, with its members occurring in regions that were important glacial refugia. The genus probably originated in eastern Asia and from there dispersed to Europe and North America. For the Macaronesian endemic species –C. elegans, M. edulis and M. decipiens–divareconstructs either a single dispersal event to Macaronesia from the Mediterranean/African region, or a single dispersal followed by a back-dispersal to the mainland. The radiation of Tornabenea from Cape Verde followed a second dispersal of Daucinae to Macaronesia. Woodiness in Melanoselinum/Monizia and Tornabenea, therefore, is a derived and independently acquired trait. The African members of Cryptotaenia are derived from an ancestor arriving from the Middle East.

Keywords: Apiaceae; Cryptotaenia; Macaronesia; Umbelliferae; disjunctions; phylogeny; rDNA ITS; taxonomy

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Plant Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL, USA

Publication date: 2007-12-01

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