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Molecular relationships, biogeography, and evolution of Gondwanan Campylopus species (Dicranaceae, Bryopsida)

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Circumscription, intraspecific variation, and biogeography of five Campylopus species of putative Gondwanan origin, C. flexuosus, C. fragilis, C. pyriformis, C. savannarum, and C. thwaitesii, are evaluated based on parsimony and likelihood analyses of nuclear ribosomal ITS1/ITS2 and chloroplast atpB-rbcL spacer sequences, and are compared with those of C. introflexus and C. pilifer. Campylopus introflexus and C. thwaitesii are monophyletic with low intraspecific sequence variation; specimens of C. savannarum appear on one well-supported clade together with two closely related species. In contrast, specimens of C. flexuosus, C. fragilis, C. pilifer, and C. pyriformis do not form monophyletic groups but are spread over several clades, which partly correspond to geographical regions. Apparently, these morphologically defined species are comprised of groups of populations that are morphologically similar due to convergent evolution. It is concluded that the circumscription and distribution patterns of these widespread Campylopus species are to be revised.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Freie Universität Berlin, Institut für Biologie - Systematische Botanik und Pflanzengeographie, Altensteinstr. 6, D-14195 Berlin, Germany

Publication date: 2005-05-01

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