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Symbioses: Plant, Animal, and Microbe Interactions

Jolles, Diana [1], Hynson, Nicole [2].

Local genetic differentiation and mycoheterotrophy in Pyrola picta and Pyrola aphylla (Pyroleae: Monotropoideae: Ericaceae).

Mycoheterotrophy in the Pyrola picta species complex (Pyroleae: Monotropoideae: Ericaceae) is clearly manifest in one species, Pyrola aphylla, which is non-photosynthetic and nearly leafless. Variation in leaf morphology of the closely-related, photosynthetic species, Pyrola picta, suggests that P. aphylla may constitute one extreme in the continuum of leaf variation in P. picta rather than a distinct species. In this study, we examine genetic, morphological, and physiological differentiation between 150 individuals from eight allopatric and sympatric populations of P. picta and P. aphylla from the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range, California, to assess the possible contributions of mycoheterotrophy and geographic isolation to genetic differentiation between these two members of the species complex. We used amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP), nucleotide sequence polymorphism, carbon and nitrogen isotope analysis, and geographic distances between plant populations to assess genetic and physiological differentiation within and between plant populations. Additionally, fungi from the roots of a subset of the sampled P. picta and P. aphylla were extracted and identified. Not surprisingly, results from analyses of these data indicate that detection of genetic and physiological differentiation between P. aphylla and P. picta is highly sensitive to the observation type and data analysis method. While AFLP and isotope analyses support clear differentiation between these species, nucleotide sequence analysis is less informative, indicating little-to-no genetic differentiation between P. aphylla and P. picta. Additionally, the results of ectomycorrhizal fungal identification do not provide support for a hypothesis of evolutionary divergence due to specialization (or coevolution).


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1 - Ohio State University, Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, 300 Aronoff Laboratory, 318 W. 12th Ave., Columbus, Ohio, 43210-1293, USA
2 - University of California, Berkeley, Department of Plant Biology, Koshland Hall, Berkeley, CA, 94720, USA

Keywords:
Pyrola
mycoheterotrophy
AFLP
C/N isotopes
population genetics.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Topics
Session: CP51
Location: Continental B/Hilton
Date: Wednesday, July 11th, 2007
Time: 2:15 PM
Number: CP51006
Abstract ID:1806


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