The Greatest Opportunists of all: Celebrating 40 years of Job Kuijt’s
Tank, David C. .
Using large trees to synthesize and direct phylogenetic research in Orobanchaceae.
How much do we know about the phylogenetic history of the major branches of the angiosperm tree of life, and how can we best synthesize existing knowledge to provide a basis for identifying gaps in our understanding of phylogenetic relationships? As more and more sequence data accumulates in databases and methods for the reconstruction of large phylogenetic trees advance, we are at a point where we can begin to carry out comprehensive analyses that span multiple studies and provide a way to address these fundamental questions. Orobanchaceae are a clade of approximately 90 genera and more than 2,000 species of predominately parasitic plants in the Lamiales, and although numerous broad-scale and species-level molecular phylogenetic studies have greatly increased our knowledge of relationships within Orobanchaceae, no comprehensive phylogenetic analyses have been conducted that include both a wide generic sampling and a large sampling of species. Using available sequence data from strategically sampled gene regions that have been employed for phylogenetic analyses at various taxonomic levels, I assembled a supermatrix of both chloroplast and nuclear DNA regions for a sampling of more than 400 species of Orobanchaceae. Separate and combined analyses of this large Orobanchaceae dataset largely confirm phylogenetic relationships revealed in earlier studies, but importantly these analyses provide a clear assessment of where the gaps in our phylogenetic knowledge exist, and allow us to strategically direct future phylogenetic efforts with respect to both taxonomic and genetic sampling in the clade. In addition, with this comprehensive phylogenetic hypothesis for Orobanchaceae, it is possible to provide a more global assessment of broad evolutionary questions, including the evolution of holoparasitism and the molecular evolutionary consequences of the parasitic habit.
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1 - University of Idaho, Dept. of Forest Resources & Stillinger Herbarium, PO Box 441133, Moscow, ID, 83844, USA
Presentation Type: Symposium or Colloquium Presentation
Location: Cottonwood A/Snowbird Center
Date: Wednesday, July 29th, 2009
Time: 3:30 PM