Population genetic structure and hybridization patterns in the Mediterranean endemics Phlomis lychnitis and P. crinita (Lamiaceae)

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2007
Authors:Albaladejo, RG, Aparicio, A
Journal:Annals of Botany
Date Published:Oct
Keywords:Bayes Theorem, Cluster Analysis, Gene Flow, Genetic Drift, Genetic Variation, Genotype, Hybridization: Genetic, Phlomis, Phylogeny, Plant Proteins, Population Dynamics, Sequence Analysis: Protein, Spain

BACKGROUND AND AIMS: The historical influence of gene flow and genetic drift after the last glacial phase of the Quaternary Period is reflected in current levels of genetic diversity and population structure of plant species. Moreover, hybridization after secondary contact might also affect population genetic diversity and structure. An assessment was made of the genetic variation and hybrid zone structure in Iberian populations of the Mediterranean Phlomis lychnitis and P. crinita, for which phylogenetic relationships are controversial, and hybridization and introgression are common. METHODS: Allozyme variation at 13 loci was analysed in 1723 individual plants sampled from 35 natural locations of P. lychnitis, P. crinita subsp. malacitana and P. crinita subsp. crinita in southern and eastern Spain. Standard genetic diversity parameters were calculated and patterns of genetic structure in each taxon were tested to fit the equilibrium between gene flow and genetic drift. Individual multilocus genotypes were subjected to Bayesian clustering analysis to estimate hybridization and introgression rates for both geographic regions. KEY RESULTS: Contrasting patterns in the distribution of genetic variation among the three taxa were found. Phlomis lychnitis showed no significant inbreeding, low genetic differentiation among populations and no evidence of isolation by distance. Phlomis crinita subsp. malacitana and P. crinita subsp. crinita showed high levels of genetic structure consistent with a pattern of gene flow-drift equilibrium. Higher instances of hybridization and introgression were detected in locations from southern Spain compared with locations from eastern Spain, matching unimodal and bimodal hybrid zones, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: High instances of historical gene flow, range expansion and altitudinal movement during the Quaternary Period, and lineage sorting can explain the diversity of patterns observed. The results suggest that P. lychnitis is the most differentiated lineage in the group; however, the relationship between the three taxa remains unclear.

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith