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Molecular Signatures of Reticulate Evolution within the Complex of European Pine Taxa

1
Institute of Environmental Biology, Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Uniwersytetu Poznańskiego 6, 61-614 Poznań, Poland
2
Institute of Dendrology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Parkowa 5, 62-035 Kórnik, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2021, 12(4), 489; https://doi.org/10.3390/f12040489
Received: 8 March 2021 / Revised: 12 April 2021 / Accepted: 13 April 2021 / Published: 15 April 2021
(This article belongs to the Section Genetics and Molecular Biology)
Speciation mechanisms, including the role of interspecific gene flow and introgression in the emergence of new species, are the major focus of evolutionary studies. Inference of taxonomic relationship between closely related species may be challenged by past hybridization events, but at the same time, it may provide new knowledge about mechanisms responsible for the maintenance of species integrity despite interspecific gene flow. Here, using nucleotide sequence variation and utilizing a coalescent modeling framework, we tested the role of hybridization and introgression in the evolutionary history of closely related pine taxa from the Pinus mugo complex and P. sylvestris. We compared the patterns of polymorphism and divergence between taxa and found a great overlap of neutral variation within the P. mugo complex. Our phylogeny reconstruction indicated multiple instances of reticulation events in the past, suggesting an important role of interspecific gene flow in the species divergence. The best-fitting model revealed P. mugo and P. uncinata as sister species with basal P. uliginosa and asymmetric migration between all investigated species after their divergence. The magnitude of interspecies gene flow differed greatly, and it was consistently stronger from representatives of P. mugo complex to P. sylvestris than in the opposite direction. The results indicate the prominent role of reticulation evolution in those forest trees and provide a genetic framework to study species integrity maintained by selection and local adaptation. View Full-Text
Keywords: coalescent analysis; hybridization; phylogeny; pines; speciation; species complex; interspecific gene flow coalescent analysis; hybridization; phylogeny; pines; speciation; species complex; interspecific gene flow
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MDPI and ACS Style

Łabiszak, B.; Wachowiak, W. Molecular Signatures of Reticulate Evolution within the Complex of European Pine Taxa. Forests 2021, 12, 489. https://doi.org/10.3390/f12040489

AMA Style

Łabiszak B, Wachowiak W. Molecular Signatures of Reticulate Evolution within the Complex of European Pine Taxa. Forests. 2021; 12(4):489. https://doi.org/10.3390/f12040489

Chicago/Turabian Style

Łabiszak, Bartosz, and Witold Wachowiak. 2021. "Molecular Signatures of Reticulate Evolution within the Complex of European Pine Taxa" Forests 12, no. 4: 489. https://doi.org/10.3390/f12040489

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