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A molecular phylogeny of Solanum sect. Pteroidea (Solanaceae) and the utility of COSII markers in resolving relationships among closely related species

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Solanum sect. Pteroidea is a lineage of ten species of neotropical herbs and vines with a center of distribution in the eastern Andean slopes. It is a member of the Potato clade of Solanum, a group that includes the potato (S. tuberosum) and tomato (S. lycopersicum). Members of S. sect. Pteroidea are characterized by inflorescences that emerge from the leaf axils and rugose, sharply pointed fruits in most species. The aim of this study is to infer phylogenetic relationships among sixteen species of Solanum, including all ten species of S. sect. Pteroidea, using DNA sequence data from the chloroplast trnT-trnF and five nuclear regions: ITS, the granule bound starch synthase gene (GBSSI or waxy), and three Conserved Orthologous Set II (COSII) markers. Results provide strong support for the monophyly of S. sect. Pteroidea and for its sister group relationship to S. sect. Herpystichum. Solanum mite, one of the most widespread and morphologically variable species in the section, is not monophyletic. Bayesian analyses using a total evidence concatenated approach and a coalescent approach implemented in BEST produced largely congruent topologies. The total evidence trees, however, were much more highly supported than the BEST trees. Although not useful individually in S. sect. Pteroidea, the three COSII markers were easy to amplify, provided clean sequences, and were tremendously useful in increasing resolution and support among the closely related species of S. sect. Pteroidea in combined analyses.


Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Biology, 257 South 1400 East, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah 84112-0840, U.S.A., Department of Biological Sciences, 614 Rieveschl Hall, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio 45221, U.S.A. 2: Department of Biology, 257 South 1400 East, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah 84112-0840, U.S.A.;, Email:

Publication date: 2010-06-01

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