Diversité et évolution du genre Fraxinus

Authors: Hinsinger, Damien
Advisor: Bousquet, Jean
Abstract: The genus Fraxinus contains about 45 species of temperate trees and shrubs colonizing various habitats in the Northern hemisphere. A great intraspecific and interspecific diversity indicated the need to estimate a molecular phylogeny in order to reconstruct and interpret the biogeographic history of this circumpolar angiosperm tree genus, both at the generic and the specific scale in Europe. The study of cpDNA diversity did not allow to distinguish among the different species of the genus, particularly when these species were closely related, due to very low divergence rates at the nucleotide level. However, some taxonomical sections of the genus could be recognised. These results show that the use of cpDNA regions as a molecular barcode cannot be a universal answer for the estimation of forest tree biodiversity, despite the good discrimination and results obtained with herbaceous plants. Thus, subsequent efforts at estimating the phylogeny of the genus were thus directed towards nuclear regions. The sections previously described were retrieved, and species that could not be attributed to a taxonomic group (incertae sedis) were assigned with confidence to the section Melioides. Some species of the section Melioides appeared to have exchanged genes recently or having radiated, forming a polytomy in all datasets. According to this phylogeny, three dispersal events were inferred, two from North America to Asia, the last from Asia to North America. The evolution of the section Fraxinus, which is mainly found in Eurasia, was further investigated and the phylogeny dated, in order to determine associations between past geological and climatic changes and the extant genetic diversity. A major incongruence was detected between tree topologies derived from different regions of the nuclear genome, indicating ancient reticulate evolution between F. angustifolia and F. mandshurica. The Himalaya uplift and climatic changes observed during the end of Tertiary could explain the speciation events in the section, whereas the warmer climate during the Miocene could have provided favourable conditions for expanding natural ranges, favouring reticulate evolution between F. angustifolia and F. mandshurica. All these results confirm the key role of natural hybridization and ancient reticulate evolution, highlighting the major influence of environmental changes on structuring the present taxonomical and genetic diversity of the genus Fraxinus.
Document Type: Thèse de doctorat
Issue Date: 2010
Open Access Date: 16 April 2018
Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11794/21587
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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