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Free Content Genome fingerprinting confirms the species status of the Loosestrifes Lysimachia punctata and L. verticillata (Primulaceae)

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Background and aims – Despite their vicariant distribution and slightly distinct morphologies, the Dotted Loosestrife (L. punctata L.) and the Whorled Loosestrife (L. verticillata (Green) Hand.-Mazz.) have sometimes been treated as synonyms, or even confounded by several authors. Here we examine the genetic divergence of these two taxa in order to clarify their species status.

Methods – We apply AFLP genome fingerprinting to samples from eleven wild and two naturalized populations, and compile occurrence data from herbaria and public data depositories.

Key results – The distribution of genotypes in a multivariate space confirms the distinct species status of the two species, and highlights the absence of natural hybrids between the two in their native area. This result contrasts with the hybrid nature of naturalized populations from northern Europe, likely produced through horticultural practices.

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Document Type: Short Communication

Publication date: November 1, 2016

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