Premise of the study: Thallus architecture has long been a powerful guide for classifying lichens and has often trumped photobiont association and ascomatal type, but the reliability of these characters to predict phylogenetic affi nity has seldom been tested. The cyanolichen genus Polychidium unites species that have strikingly similar gross morphology but consort with different photobiont genera. If Polychidium were found to be monophyletic, photobiont switching among closely related species would be suggested. If, however, species were found to arise in different lineages, a convergent body plan and ascomatal type evolution would be inferred. • Methods: We tested the monophyly of Polychidium with a multilocus phylogeny based on nuclear and mitochondrial sequence data from all known Peltigeralean families and reconstructed ancestral states for specifi c thallus architecture and ascomatal ontogeny types relative to Polychidium and other clades. • Key results: We found that Polychidium consists of two species groups that arose independently in different suborders within the Peltigerales, associated with Nostoc and Scytonema photobionts, respectively. We infer from ancestral character state reconstruction that dendroid thallus architecture evolved independently in these two lineages. • Conclusions: The independent development of similar dendroid thallus architecture in different fungal suborders with different photobionts represents a clear and previously overlooked example of convergent evolution in lichens. Our results also suggest a pattern of character state conservation, loss, and reversion in ascomatal ontogeny types, hitherto considered conserved traits useful for higher level ascomycete systematics.

Convergent evolution of a symbiotic duet: the case of the lichen genus POlychidium (Peltigerales, Ascomycota)

MUGGIA, LUCIA;
2011

Abstract

Premise of the study: Thallus architecture has long been a powerful guide for classifying lichens and has often trumped photobiont association and ascomatal type, but the reliability of these characters to predict phylogenetic affi nity has seldom been tested. The cyanolichen genus Polychidium unites species that have strikingly similar gross morphology but consort with different photobiont genera. If Polychidium were found to be monophyletic, photobiont switching among closely related species would be suggested. If, however, species were found to arise in different lineages, a convergent body plan and ascomatal type evolution would be inferred. • Methods: We tested the monophyly of Polychidium with a multilocus phylogeny based on nuclear and mitochondrial sequence data from all known Peltigeralean families and reconstructed ancestral states for specifi c thallus architecture and ascomatal ontogeny types relative to Polychidium and other clades. • Key results: We found that Polychidium consists of two species groups that arose independently in different suborders within the Peltigerales, associated with Nostoc and Scytonema photobionts, respectively. We infer from ancestral character state reconstruction that dendroid thallus architecture evolved independently in these two lineages. • Conclusions: The independent development of similar dendroid thallus architecture in different fungal suborders with different photobionts represents a clear and previously overlooked example of convergent evolution in lichens. Our results also suggest a pattern of character state conservation, loss, and reversion in ascomatal ontogeny types, hitherto considered conserved traits useful for higher level ascomycete systematics.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11368/2758353
 Attenzione

Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo

Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 39
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 35
social impact