Abstract Detail



Ecological factors that drive patterns of population genetic structure in plants

Edwards, Christine [1], Lindsay, Denise [2], Swift, Joel [3], Lance, Richard [4].

A comparison of patterns of genetic structure in two co-occurring Agave species that differ in the patchiness of their geographical distributions and cultivation histories.

Spatial genetic structure in plants can be affected by continuity of geographical distribution, cultivation history, pollination and seed dispersal mechanisms. Here, we examined the relative effects of these factors on the genetic structure of Agave palmeri and A. parryi, which share similar pollination syndromes and seed dispersal mechanisms but differ in the continuity of their distributions and cultivation history. Agave parryi has a patchy distribution and was cultivated by Native Americans, whereas A. palmeri has a more continuous distribution and no documented history of cultivation. We sampled populations of each species in their North American ranges, genotyped individuals with microsatellite loci and analysed patterns of genetic structure. No genetic structuring was detected in A. palmeri, but A. parryi formed three distinct genetic clusters, corresponding to geographical locations. One genetic cluster of A. parryi contained populations from lower elevations and had lower levels of genetic diversity, probably indicating anthropogenic origins. We conclude that continuity of distribution, pollinators and cultivation history all may affect patterns of genetic connectivity.


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1 - Missouri Botanical Garden, 4344 Shaw Ave., St. Louis, MO, 63110, United States
2 - US Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Environmental Laboratory, 3909 Halls Ferry Rd, Vicksburg, MS, 39180, USA
3 - Saint Louis University, 2166 Lawrence St. Apt 2N, APT 2N, St. Louis, MO, 63110, United States
4 - US Army Engineer Research and Development Center, 3909 Halls Ferry Rd, Vicksburg, MS, 39180, USA

Keywords:
genetic structure
Agave
precolumbian cultivation
geographic species distribution
bat pollination
Sky islands
genetic diversity.

Presentation Type: Colloquium Presentations
Number: 0007
Abstract ID:492
Candidate for Awards:None


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