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Biogeography of succulent spurges from Brazilian Seasonally Dry Tropical Forest (SDTF)


Hurbath, Fernanda; Stubbs, Rebecca L; Cordeiro, Inês; Cellinese, Nico (2021). Biogeography of succulent spurges from Brazilian Seasonally Dry Tropical Forest (SDTF). Taxon, 70(1):153-169.

Abstract

Seasonally Dry Tropical Forests (SDTFs) are found scattered throughout the Neotropics, from northwestern Mexico to northern Argentina, and southwestern and eastern Brazil, with eastern Brazil having the largest and most isolated fragment of SDTF, known as Caatinga. Growing knowledge from dated phylogenies and ancestral reconstruction studies suggests that SDTF lineages are nested in geographically structured phylogenies with clades highly restricted to each disjunct patch. To address these hypotheses, we investigated the biogeographic history of Euphorbia sect. Brasilienses, a group of succulent spurges from eastern Brazil's SDTF. To this aim, we assembled a concatenated matrix from 126 accessions with four markers (302 sequences from previous studies and 19 newly generated): one nuclear (ITS1) and three plastid (matK, ndhF, trnL‐trnF) loci. Our results showed that clade Brasilienses and its sister group Stachydium diverged from a common ancestor during the Miocene around 16.5 Ma. Clade Stachydium was recovered with a mean crown age of 7.7 Ma, while clade Brasilienses was recovered as a relatively young group that started diversifying about 3.1 Ma. Biogeographic results showed that the ancestral range of the clade Stachydium + Brasilienses comprised the Andes and eastern Brazil's SDTF, therefore suggesting past connections between western and eastern South America. The ancestral range of clade Brasilienses was restricted to eastern Brazil SDTF, which contrasts with clade Stachydium, which was recovered with a broader ancestral range around Late Miocene. Our results suggest limited dispersal abilities, niche conservatisms and an origin for E. sect. Brasilienses pre‐dating the Pleistocene. By contributing to the understanding of the origin and diversification of this group of endemic spurges, our study provides insights into the history of this SDTF in eastern South America.

Abstract

Seasonally Dry Tropical Forests (SDTFs) are found scattered throughout the Neotropics, from northwestern Mexico to northern Argentina, and southwestern and eastern Brazil, with eastern Brazil having the largest and most isolated fragment of SDTF, known as Caatinga. Growing knowledge from dated phylogenies and ancestral reconstruction studies suggests that SDTF lineages are nested in geographically structured phylogenies with clades highly restricted to each disjunct patch. To address these hypotheses, we investigated the biogeographic history of Euphorbia sect. Brasilienses, a group of succulent spurges from eastern Brazil's SDTF. To this aim, we assembled a concatenated matrix from 126 accessions with four markers (302 sequences from previous studies and 19 newly generated): one nuclear (ITS1) and three plastid (matK, ndhF, trnL‐trnF) loci. Our results showed that clade Brasilienses and its sister group Stachydium diverged from a common ancestor during the Miocene around 16.5 Ma. Clade Stachydium was recovered with a mean crown age of 7.7 Ma, while clade Brasilienses was recovered as a relatively young group that started diversifying about 3.1 Ma. Biogeographic results showed that the ancestral range of the clade Stachydium + Brasilienses comprised the Andes and eastern Brazil's SDTF, therefore suggesting past connections between western and eastern South America. The ancestral range of clade Brasilienses was restricted to eastern Brazil SDTF, which contrasts with clade Stachydium, which was recovered with a broader ancestral range around Late Miocene. Our results suggest limited dispersal abilities, niche conservatisms and an origin for E. sect. Brasilienses pre‐dating the Pleistocene. By contributing to the understanding of the origin and diversification of this group of endemic spurges, our study provides insights into the history of this SDTF in eastern South America.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Department of Systematic and Evolutionary Botany
07 Faculty of Science > Zurich-Basel Plant Science Center
Dewey Decimal Classification:580 Plants (Botany)
Scopus Subject Areas:Life Sciences > Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Life Sciences > Plant Science
Uncontrolled Keywords:Plant Science, Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Language:English
Date:1 February 2021
Deposited On:14 Jan 2021 15:25
Last Modified:22 Feb 2021 02:10
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:0040-0262
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1002/tax.12423

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