Schaefer, Hanno , Heibl, Christoph , Renner, Susanne S. .
Gourds afloat: A dated phylogeny reveals an Asian origin of Cucurbitaceae and numerous oversea dispersal events.
We developed a scenario for the spatiotemporal history of Cucurbitaceae, one of the economically most important families of plants, using a multi-gene chloroplast phylogeny based on DNA sequences from all but one of the 115 genera and 25% of the 960 species. Using this phylogeny, we
performed molecular clock dating, using combinations of fossil and geological constraints, and parsimony- and likelihood-based biogeographical analyses. The results strongly support an Asian origin of Cucurbitaceae in the Cretaceous, c. 100 million years ago, followed by the repeated spreading of lineages into the African and Australian continents and long distance dispersal events across the Atlantic to the American continent. Madagascar was colonized 13 times, apparently always from Africa, with several subsequent local radiations; Australia was colonized twelve times, but without notable lineage radiations. The Northern American cucurbit taxa are all descendants of Central and South American lineages and result from c. seven independent dispersal or range expansion events. (The phylogeny has also led to a more natural classification of the Cucurbitaceae, which we report on in a related poster.)
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1 - University of Munich, Organismal Biology, Menzingerstr. 67, Munich, 80638, Germany
long distance dispersal
North American Cucurbitaceae
Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Topics
Location: Ball Room & Party Room/SUB
Date: Monday, July 28th, 2008
Time: 12:30 PM