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Abstract Detail

Systematics Section

Morris, Ashley B. [1].

Illicium (Illiciaceae) systematics: current knowledge and future directions.

Illicium is a relatively small (~30-40 spp.), monophyletic group of basal angiosperms distributed throughout southeast Asia, eastern North America and the Greater Antilles. By exhibiting numerous well-documented geographic disjunctions, Illicium provides an excellent opportunity for testing biogeographic hypotheses across these regions. While a well resolved phylogeny based on morphology and molecules is still lacking in this group, some progress has been made. Recent molecular work using the nuclear ribosomal ITS and several non-coding plastid regions recovered two well-supported clades congruent with the Old and New World disjunction. This is in contrast to traditional taxonomy in the genus, which was dependent on floral morphological characters that have now been shown to be homoplastic in light of molecular data. However, nuclear and plastid sequence data, in addition to a reconsideration of certain morphological characters, have led to the recognition of two new Illicium species in the last five years, both of which are found in the Greater Antilles. Relationships within the two major clades of Illicium remain unresolved, indicating the need for more rapidly evolving markers. Population genetics and phylogeographic approaches will be necessary to understand species boundaries in this group. Preliminary work has begun on New World species, with a current focus on Illicium parviflorum, which is endemic to central Florida. Population structure of this species using inter-simple sequence repeats was recently completed, and microsatellites are currently being developed to confirm observed patterns. Furthermore, microsatellites will be optimized for cross-species amplification to allow for a future survey of New World taxa, with the goal of relating genetic and morphological groupings, as well as addressing biogeographic hypotheses for the Caribbean.

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1 - University of South Alabama, Department of Biology, Life Sciences Building 124, Mobile, AL, 36688, USA

Caribbean biogeography
ENA / EAS disjunction
Illicium parviflorum
molecular systematics

Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for BSA Sections
Session: P1
Location: Event Tent/Cliff Lodge
Date: Monday, July 27th, 2009
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: P1SP031
Abstract ID:565