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Abstract Detail

Questioning Species and Species Complexes: A Colloquium in Honor of Dr. R. James Hickey

Budke, Jessica [1], Patel, Nikisha R [2], Wienhold, Mark D [1].

Exploring relationships in the moss genus Fissidens using molecular data generated from herbarium specimens..

Fissidens is a charismatic and morphologically distinct genus of mosses that have a distichous leaf arrangement and a leaf lamina that is split into a ‘V’, pocketing the leaf above into the one below. Subgeneric and section classifications for the approximately 450 Fissidens species are based on features of the peristome teeth and leaf costa anatomy, as well as chromosome numbers, overall gametophyte size, sexual system, and habitat. We are using a molecular phylogenetic approach to test the monophyly of the subgenera/sections and to explore several questions in the genus. 1) Are species with similar sexual systems closely related or have multiple transitions occurred? 2) Are aquatic species closely related or have taxa moved into aquatic habitats multiple times? 3) Are the large number of tropical species closely related or are they more closely related to morphologically similar temperate species?
We are undertaking a genus-wide study that leverages the vast genetic resources available from herbarium specimens to address these questions. Our preliminary results based on three gene regions (trnL-F, trnA-nad7, ITS2) indicate that a majority of the subgenera and sections are monophyletic. Potential exceptions include Fissidens asplenoides, which is not resolved with species that share its sexual system, the aquatic subgenus Octodiceras, which is nested within subgenus Fissidens, and one member of the tropical subgenus Aloma, which is located within a subgenus that includes temperate taxa.
The next phase of our project will broaden our genetic and taxonomic sampling to improve the resolution of and support for the phylogenetic relationships between Fissidens species. We will use next generation sequencing technologies to amplify hundreds of loci from each specimen sampled. Herbarium specimens, especially those that have been annotated and identified by taxonomic experts in the genus Fissidens, will continue to be an important source of genetic material for this project. As next generation sequencing technologies continue to improve, older specimens can be included and smaller amounts of material are needed to generate data for molecular phylogenetic studies.

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1 - University Of Tennessee, Ecology And Evolutionary Biology Department, 569 Dabney Hall, Knoxville, TN, 37996, United States
2 - University of Connecticut, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, 75 North Eagleville Rd, Storrs, Connecticut, 06269, United States

Herbarium Specimens
mating system
molecular phylogenetics
Next Generation Sequencing
peristome teeth

Presentation Type: Colloquium Presentations
Session: CO12, Questioning Species and Species Complexes: A Colloquium in Honor of Dr. R. James Hickey
Location: San Luis 1/Starr Pass
Date: Wednesday, July 31st, 2019
Time: 4:00 PM
Number: CO12010
Abstract ID:711
Candidate for Awards:None

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