Correlating Bayesian date estimates with climatic events and domestication using a bovine case study
Ho, S. Y. W., Larson, G., Edwards, C. J., Heupink, T. H., Lakin, K. E., Holland, P. W. H. and Shapiro, B. (2008) Correlating Bayesian date estimates with climatic events and domestication using a bovine case study. Biology Letters, 4 (4). pp. 370-374. ISSN 1744-9561
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2008.0073
The tribe Bovini contains a number of commercially and culturally important species, such as cattle. Understanding their evolutionary time scale is important for distinguishing between post-glacial and domestication-associated population expansions, but estimates of bovine divergence times have been hindered by a lack of reliable calibration points. We present a Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of 481 mitochondrial D-loop sequences, including 228 radiocarbon-dated ancient DNA sequences, using a multi-demographic coalescent model. By employing the radiocarbon dates as internal calibrations, we co-estimate the bovine phylogeny and divergence times in a relaxed-clock framework. The analysis yields evidence for significant population expansions in both taurine and zebu cattle, European aurochs and yak clades. The divergence age estimates support domestication-associated expansion times (less than 12 kyr) for the major haplogroups of cattle. We compare the molecular and palaeontological estimates for the Bison-Bos divergence.