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Comparative analysis of spatial genetic structure in an ant-plant symbiosis reveals a tension zone and highlights speciation processes in tropical Africa

Blatrix Rumsaïs, Peccoud Jean, Born Céline, Piatscheck Finn, Benoit Laure, Sauve Mathieu, Djiéto-Lordon Champlain, Attéké Christiane, Wieringa Jan J., Harris David, McKey Doyle B.. 2017. Comparative analysis of spatial genetic structure in an ant-plant symbiosis reveals a tension zone and highlights speciation processes in tropical Africa. Journal of Biogeography, 44 (8) : pp. 1856-1868.

Journal article ; Article de revue à facteur d'impact
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Quartile : Q1, Sujet : GEOGRAPHY, PHYSICAL / Quartile : Q1, Sujet : ECOLOGY

Liste HCERES des revues (en SHS) : oui

Thème(s) HCERES des revues (en SHS) : Géographie-Aménagement-Urbanisme-Architecture

Abstract : Aim: Pleistocene climatic oscillations induced range fluctuations in African rain forest organisms and may have shaped species diversification through allopatric speciation events. We compared the spatial genetic structure of two forest species that live in obligate symbiosis and thus must have experienced the same range fluctuations, as a means to discriminate incipient speciation from transient differentiation simply resulting from past divergence. Location: Western central Africa. Methods: We genotyped 765 individuals of the tree Barteria fistulosa and 605 colonies of its symbiotic ant Tetraponera aethiops at 12 and 13 microsatellite loci, respectively. We compared the spatial genetic structure of the two symbionts by using Bayesian clustering algorithms, isolation-by-distance analyses and clines of synthetic alleles. We used species niche modelling (climatic and soil variables) to investigate ecological variables associated with genetic discontinuities in tree populations. Results: The trees and the ants showed congruent patterns of spatial genetic structure. However, the trees showed a very steep genetic discontinuity between groups north and south of latitude 1° N, which was much weaker in the ants. There was no evidence for effective gene flow between the two tree lineages in contact at the transition zone, despite the presence of a few hybrids. Niche modelling did not predict the occurrence of northern trees south of this genetic transition, and vice versa. Main conclusions: The genetic discontinuity near latitude 1° N is inferred to be a tension zone resulting from reproductive incompatibilities between previously allopatric tree lineages. This tension zone may have stabilized at a climatic transition (between boreal and austral seasonal regimes), and matches patterns of genetic structure previously observed in other forest plant species. Our results illustrate independent speciation between two species that live in specific and obligate symbiosis and suggest that a tension zone may separate lineages of several central African forest plants near the thermal equator. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés Agrovoc : Forêt tropicale humide, Forêt, écosystème forestier, Formicidae, Interactions biologiques, Relation plante animal, Symbiose, Variation génétique, Climat, Taxonomie, Phylogénie

Mots-clés géographiques Agrovoc : Afrique, Guinée, République démocratique du Congo

Mots-clés libres : Africa, Barteria, Climatic oscillations, Guinea-Congolian rainforest, Incipient, Speciation, Phylogeography, Pleistocene, Symbiosis, Tension zone, Tetraponera

Classification Agris : F30 - Plant genetics and breeding
F70 - Plant taxonomy and geography
P40 - Meteorology and climatology

Champ stratégique Cirad : Axe 6 (2014-2018) - Sociétés, natures et territoires

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Blatrix Rumsaïs, Centre national de la recherche scientifique (FRA)
  • Peccoud Jean, Centre national de la recherche scientifique (FRA)
  • Born Céline, Centre national de la recherche scientifique (FRA)
  • Piatscheck Finn, CNRS (FRA)
  • Benoit Laure, CIRAD-BIOS-UMR CBGP (FRA)
  • Sauve Mathieu, Centre national de la recherche scientifique (FRA)
  • Djiéto-Lordon Champlain, Université de Yaoundé (CMR)
  • Attéké Christiane, Université des sciences et techniques de Masuku (GAB)
  • Wieringa Jan J., Wageningen University (NLD)
  • Harris David, Royal Botanic Garden (GBR)
  • McKey Doyle B., CEFE (FRA)

Source : Cirad-Agritrop (https://agritrop.cirad.fr/584542/)

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