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Global phylogeny and biogeography of the fern genus Ctenitis (Dryopteridaceae), with a focus on the Indian Ocean region

Hennequin, S., Rouhan, G., Salino, A., Duan, Y.-F., Lepeigneux, M.-C., Guillou, M., Ansell, S., Almeida, T. E., Zhang, L.-B. and Schneider, H. (2017) Global phylogeny and biogeography of the fern genus Ctenitis (Dryopteridaceae), with a focus on the Indian Ocean region. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 112. pp. 277-289. ISSN 1055-7903

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2017.04.012


The diverse and pantropical genus Ctenitis, in the Dryopteridaceae, has been largely ignored in phylogenetic studies until now. In this study, we fill in this gap by reconstructing the first comprehensive phylogeny of the genus including 53 species currently recognized in the genus Ctenitis, among which seven species formerly were assigned to the genus Pseudotectaria and one to Heterogonium. Special emphasis was given to the sampling of species occurring in the African-Indian Ocean region. The presented results include reconstruction of a biogeographic scenario based on estimated divergence times and ancestral area reconstruction. Our findings confirm the inclusion, within Ctenitis, of the Indian Ocean species formerly placed in Pseudotectaria and Heterogonium. The crown group divergence was estimated to date back to the Oligocene or Early Miocene. The biogeographical scenario indicates an initial divergence of the Asian-Pacific ranges and the neotropical ranges, and a subsequent colonization of the Afro-Madagascan region by a lineage with neotropical ancestors. The Afro-Madagascan lineage splits into a lineage endemic to the Mascarene islands and a lineage occurring in Madagascar, the Comoros and Africa. The range expansion towards Africa and Madagascar was estimated to date back to the late Miocene, whereas the estimated ages for the onset of the diversification of the Mascarene diversity is consistent with the ages of these young, volcanic islands. The absence of any extant species of Ctenitis with a multi-continental distribution range and the rarity of inter-island dispersal and speciation in the Indian Ocean region suggest a limited contribution of long distance dispersal to the biogeographical history of this fern genus, versus a high contribution of local speciation.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Interdisciplinary centres and themes > Food Chain and Health
ID Code:70256
Uncontrolled Keywords:Biogeography, Madagascar, Mascarenes, dispersal, diversification, ferns

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