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Systematics and evolutionary history of the circum-Mediterranean genus Anagyris L. (Fabaceae) based on morphological and molecular data

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Abstract:

A taxonomic survey of the relict and poorly known circum-Mediterranean Anagyris (Fabaceae) was conducted using a total evidence principle approach based on morphological and molecular data. Statistical analysis of both qualitative and quantitative morphological and chemically-derived traits allowed us to separate the Mediterranean A. foetida and the Canarian A. latifolia as independent species. Newly analyzed traits relating to the odour of leaves, number of inflorescences per branch, colour of fresh calyx, and degree of corolla opening, were diagnostic for identifying these two previously almost indistinguishable taxa. Significant differences in quantitative morphometric traits indicate that vegetative and floral characters are overall larger in A. latifolia than in A. foetida, supporting the hypothesis of increased size and woodiness of Macaronesian endemic plants compared to the reduced sizes of their continental counterparts adapted to the more xeric Mediterranean climate. Combined plastid trnLF and nuclear ribosomal ITS data recovered a monophyletic origin of Anagyris within the central-western Eurasian Thermopsideae clade and its split into two lineages. The dated divergences of the Anagyris lineages, calculated by Bayesian relaxed-clock methods with the combined sequence data, showed that Anagyris diverged in the late Miocene (8.2 ± 4.5 Ma), and that the origin of A. foetida (3.6 ± 3.2 Ma) pre-dated that of A. latifolia (1.9 ± 2.1 Ma).

Keywords: ANAGYRIS; DIVERGENCE TIMES; MEDITERRANEAN-MACARONESIAN REGION; MORPHOLOGY; NUCLEAR AND; PLASTID SEQUENCES; THERMOPSIDEAE

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Área de Botánica, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Extremadura, Avda. Elvas s / n, 06071 Badajoz Spain

Publication date: November 1, 2009

iapt/tax/2009/00000058/00000004/art00018
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