Polyploidy, the duplication of entire genomes, plays a major role in plant evolution. In allopolyploids, genome duplication is associated with hybridization between two or more divergent genomes. Successive hybridization and polyploidization events can build up species complexes of allopolyploids with complicated network-like histories, and the evolutionary history of many plant groups cannot be adequately represented by phylogenetic trees because of such reticulate events. The history of complex genome mergings within a high-polyploid species complex in the genus Cerastium (Caryophyllaceae) is here untangled by the use of a network algorithm and noncoding sequences of a low-copy number gene. The resulting network illustrates how hybridization and polyploidization have acted as key evolutionary processes in creating a plant group where high-level allopolyploids clearly outnumber extant parental genomes.
|Number of pages||10|
|Publication status||Published - 2007|