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Diversity 2017, 9(2), 20; doi:10.3390/d9020020

The Phylogeny and Biogeography of Phyla nodiflora (Verbenaceae) Reveals Native and Invasive Lineages throughout the World

1
Ecosystem Management, University of New England, Armidale 2351, NSW, Australia
2
Current Address: Biology, Golestan University, Beheshti St., Gorgan, Iran
3
Ecosystem Sciences, CSIRO, EcoSciences Precinct, Dutton Park 4102, QLD, Australia
4
Current Address; 64 Tyalgum Creek Rd, Tyalgum 2484, NSW, Australia
5
National Herbarium of New South Wales, Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust, Mrs Macquaries Road, Sydney 2000, NSW, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Rosa Rao and Giandomenico Corrado
Received: 3 March 2017 / Revised: 1 May 2017 / Accepted: 4 May 2017 / Published: 10 May 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Genetics and Biotechnology in Biodiversity)
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Abstract

Phyla nodiflora is an herbaceous perennial and an enigmatic species. It is indigenous to the Americas but is considered a natural component of the flora in many areas and a weed in others. Our aim was to circumscribe the native range of P. nodiflora, to explore dispersal mechanisms and routes and to test the hypothesis that P. nodiflora is native outside of the Americas. Determining whether distributions are natural or human-induced has implications for decisions regarding weed control or conservation. We undertook phylogenetic analyses using sequence variation in nuclear DNA marker ITS (Internal Transcribed Spacer) for a global sample of 160 populations of P. nodiflora sourced from Asia, Australia, central America, the Mediterranean, southern North America, South America and Africa. Analyses included maximum likelihood, maximum parsimony, a Bayesian estimation of phylogeny and a parsimony network analysis which provided a genealogical reconstruction of ribotypes. We evaluated phylogenies against extensive historical and biogeographical data. Based on the sequences, 64 ribotypes were identified worldwide within P. nodiflora and considerable geographic structure was evident with five clades: one unsupported and the remaining weakly supported (bootstrap support ranging from 52% to 71%). Populations from central and southern North America formed the core area in the indigenous range and we have detected at least three native lineages outside of this range. Within Australia P. nodiflora is represented by at least one native lineage and several post-European introductions. Phyla nodiflora is one of the few species in the family Verbenaceae to have a pan-tropical native distribution, probably resulting from natural dispersal from America to Africa then to Australasia. However, it has also undergone human-mediated dispersal, which has obscured the native-origin of some ribotypes. These introductions present a risk of diluting the pan-tropical structure evident in this species and therefore they have important conservation implications. View Full-Text
Keywords: biogeography; nuclear DNA ITS variation; native versus alien status; Phyla nodiflora; Phyla canescens; phylogeny; ribotype analyses biogeography; nuclear DNA ITS variation; native versus alien status; Phyla nodiflora; Phyla canescens; phylogeny; ribotype analyses
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Gross, C.L.; Fatemi, M.; Julien, M.; McPherson, H.; Van Klinken, R. The Phylogeny and Biogeography of Phyla nodiflora (Verbenaceae) Reveals Native and Invasive Lineages throughout the World. Diversity 2017, 9, 20.

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