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Abstract Detail

Mechanisms underlying exceptional plant diversity across eastern Asia

Zhang, Xu [1], Landis, Jacob [2], Sun, Yanxia [1], Feng, Tao [1], Wang, Hengchang [1], Deng, Tao [3], Sun, Hang [3].

Insights into the drivers of radiating diversification in biodiversity hotspots using Saussurea (Asteraceae) as a model.

The Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP) encompasses areas with a remarkably high degree of biodiversity, harboring exceptional species-rich radiations. How these radiations formed by interacting with geology, climate and ecology remains seldom examined. We investigate the roles of abiotic (environmental) and biotic (species-intrinsic) factors in driving radiating diversification of Saussurea (Asteraceae) by deploying a number of time-dependent, paleoenvironment-dependent and trait-dependent models, as well as ecological distribution data. We show that three main clades of Saussurea begin to diversify in the Miocene almost simultaneously, with increasing diversification rates toward the present and negative dependence to paleotemperature. Our trait dependent models detect some observed phenotypic adaptation associated with diversification changes, and indicate some unobserved traits also drive diversification, demonstrating a pivotal role of morphological diversity in this radiating diversification. Accounting for ecological niche data, we further reveal that acceleration in diversification rates are correlated with climate lability, niche breadth and the size of species' range. We conclude that fluctuation of paleoclimate along with complex QTP environments provided opportunities for increased diversification rates of Saussurea with diverse adaptive traits, highlighting the importance of combinations of clade-specific traits and ecological niches in driving rapid radiation.

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1 - Chinese Academy of Sciences, CAS Key Laboratory of Plant Germplasm Enhancement and Specialty Agriculture, Wuhan Botanical Garden, Jiufeng first road, Wuhan, Hubei, 430074, China
2 - Cornell University, School of Integrative Plant Science, Section of Plant Biology and the L.H. Bailey Hortorium, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, 14850, USA
3 - Chinese Academy of Sciences, Key Laboratory for Plant Diversity and Biogeography of East Asia, Kunming Institute of Botany, Kunming, Yunnan, 650201 , China


Presentation Type: Colloquium Presentations
Session: C04, Mechanisms underlying exceptional plant diversity across eastern Asia
Location: /
Date: Tuesday, July 20th, 2021
Time: 10:45 AM(EDT)
Number: C04003
Abstract ID:143
Candidate for Awards:Edgar T. Wherry award

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