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Vintsek, Lizaveta [1], Klichowska, Ewelina [1], Wróbel, Anna [1], Nobis, Marcin [1].

Genetic relationship and distribution modeling of two endemic species, Stipa gracilis and Stipa zeravshanica, in the mountains of Middle Asia.

The Middle Asian mountains are recognized as one of the World’s biodiversity hotspots and one of the most important focal points of future plant diversity studies and conservation. Among endemic species in the region are grasses (Poaceae) Stipa gracilis and Stipa zeravshanica, inhabiting fissures and shelves of calcareous rocky walls. Stipa gracilis occurs in the Pamir, Tian-Shan, and Alai Mountains, whereas S. zeravshanica in the western Pamir Alai Mountains. These species represent typical geographical vicariants, which are similar in morphology, prefer similar habitats, but occurring in geographically isolated mountain ranges. In this study, we generate Maxent models of potential current and future species distribution of S. gracilis and S. zeravshanica using data from fieldwork in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan in 2009-2019. For future climate scenarios, we used three climate change models, CCSM4, MIROC5, and BCC-CSM1-1 from CMIP5. Sequence data of S. gracilis and S. zeravshanica was obtained using DArTseq which represents a combination of a DArT complexity reduction methods and next-generation sequencing platforms. Modeling shows that out of the total studied area, 28132 km2 was defined as suitable for S. gracilis and only 11219 km2 for S. zeravshanica. The projected climate maps resulted in a progressive reduction of the extent of suitable habitat for S. zeravshanica under climate change. According to the optimistic emissions scenario (+2.6 W/km2) the potentially suitable areas within Central Asia would decrease by 33.8% to 2050 and by 46.0% to 2070. Pessimistic emissions scenario (+8.5 W/km2) predicts a more drastic reduction: 68.5% by 2050 and 91.4% by 2070. Prediction demonstrates the movement of S. zeravshanica suitable habitat to ca. 300 m upslope. The potential geographic distribution of S. gracilis will expand slightly under predicted levels of climate change, up to 15.8% by 2070. Results of the study show that S. gracilis indicated the adaptation to a more diverse habitat condition if com­pared to S. zeravshanica. Phylogenetic and fastSTRUCTURE analyses indicate that the species are closely related, however genetically distinct to some extent. Present study opens new insight into niche preferences and genetic relationship between vicariant species, and provide helpful information for conservation planning in the hotspot of biodiversity. The research was supported by the National Science Centre (Poland), UMO-2018/29/B/NZ9/00313

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1 - Jagiellonian University , Institute of Botany , Gronostajowa 3, Krakow, Lesser Poland, 30-387, Poland

Middle Asia
endemic plants
climate change
population genetic structure.

Presentation Type: Poster
Session: P1, Biogeography Posters
Location: Virtual/Virtual
Date: Monday, July 19th, 2021
Time: 5:00 PM(EDT)
Number: P1BG001
Abstract ID:175
Candidate for Awards:None

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