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DOI

  • Alexander S T Papadopulos
    Grand Challenges in Ecosystem and the Environment Initiative, Imperial College London, Silwood Park Campus, Ascot, Berkshire SL5 7PY, UK alexander.papadopulos@plants.ox.ac.uk.
  • Maria Kaye
    School of Biological Sciences, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen AB24 3FX, UK.
  • Céline Devaux
    Institut des Sciences de l'Evolution de Montpellier, UMR 5554, 34095 Montpellier, France.
  • Helen Hipperson
    Grand Challenges in Ecosystem and the Environment Initiative, Imperial College London, Silwood Park Campus, Ascot, Berkshire SL5 7PY, UK.
  • Jackie Lighten
    Department of Biology, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada B3H 4R2.
  • Luke T Dunning
    Grand Challenges in Ecosystem and the Environment Initiative, Imperial College London, Silwood Park Campus, Ascot, Berkshire SL5 7PY, UK.
  • Ian Hutton
    Lord Howe Island Museum, Lord Howe Island, PO Box 157, New South Wales 2898, Australia.
  • William J Baker
    Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, Surrey TW9 3DS, UK.
  • Roger K Butlin
    Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 2TN, UK.
  • Vincent Savolainen
    Grand Challenges in Ecosystem and the Environment Initiative, Imperial College London, Silwood Park Campus, Ascot, Berkshire SL5 7PY, UK Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, Surrey TW9 3DS, UK v.savolainen@imperial.ac.uk.

It is now recognized that speciation can proceed even when divergent natural selection is opposed by gene flow. Understanding the extent to which environmental gradients and geographical distance can limit gene flow within species can shed light on the relative roles of selection and dispersal limitation during the early stages of population divergence and speciation. On the remote Lord Howe Island (Australia), ecological speciation with gene flow is thought to have taken place in several plant genera. The aim of this study was to establish the contributions of isolation by environment (IBE) and isolation by community (IBC) to the genetic structure of 19 plant species, from a number of distantly related families, which have been subjected to similar environmental pressures over comparable time scales. We applied an individual-based, multivariate, model averaging approach to quantify IBE and IBC, while controlling for isolation by distance (IBD). Our analyses demonstrated that all species experienced some degree of ecologically driven isolation, whereas only 12 of 19 species were subjected to IBD. The prevalence of IBE within these plant species indicates that divergent selection in plants frequently produces local adaptation and supports hypotheses that ecological divergence can drive speciation in sympatry.

Keywords

  • Adaptation, Biological, Australia, Computer Simulation, Gene Flow, Genetic Speciation, Genetics, Population, Genotype, Geography, Islands, Models, Genetic, Plant Dispersal, Plants, Reproductive Isolation, Species Specificity, Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
JournalPhilosophical Transactions of The Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume369
Issue number1648
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Aug 2014
Externally publishedYes
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