Cymbonotus (Compositae: Arctotideae, Arctotidinae): an endemic Australian genus embedded in a southern African clade

Authors

  • VICKI A. FUNK,

    Corresponding author
    1. US National Herbarium, Department of Botany, NMNH, MRC 166, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC 20013, USA
    2. Queensland Herbarium EPA, Brisbane Botanic Gardens Mt. Coot-tha, Mount Coot-tha Road, Qld, Australia
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  • RAYMUND CHAN,

    1. US National Herbarium, Department of Botany, NMNH, MRC 166, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC 20013, USA
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  • AILSA HOLLAND

    1. Queensland Herbarium EPA, Brisbane Botanic Gardens Mt. Coot-tha, Mount Coot-tha Road, Qld, Australia
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*E-mail: funkv@si.edu

Abstract

The Compositae (Asteraceae) is the largest flowering plant family if described, accepted taxa are considered. Recent revisions in the taxonomy of the family have resulted in the recognition of ten subfamilies and 35 tribes. The tribe Arctotideae is one of the smallest, with around 200 species; it contains two subtribes and several hard-to-place taxa. Previous work has shown that the subtribe Arctotidinae is well defined and is restricted to southern Africa, except for the Australian genus Cymbonotus. Molecular data from internal transcribed spacer (ITS), ndhF, and trnL-F sequences were used (24 previously published sequences; 47 new sequences) to determine the patterns of relationships within the subtribe. Twenty-three samples from the ingroup, including members of all genera and all three species of Cymbonotus, were included in the analysis, together with two outgroup taxa. Cymbonotus is monophyletic and deeply embedded in the subtribe; Haplocarpha is paraphyletic and basal in position; all other genera are monophyletic; however, Arctotis has over 60 species and only eight were sampled for this study, so additional work may prove otherwise. Arctotis is nested high in the tree and has short branch lengths; this may reflect recent radiation. By contrast, the species of the paraphyletic and basal Haplocarpha have long branches, which may indicate an older radiation and a shared ancestry with the remainder of the subtribe. The presence of Cymbonotus in Australia is most probably the result of long-distance dispersal. Journal compilation © 2007 The Linnean Society of London, Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 2007, 153, 1–8. No claim to original US government works

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