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Glacial vicariance in the Pacific Northwest: evidence from a lodgepole pine mitochondrial DNA minisatellite for multiple genetically distinct and widely separated refugia

Authors

  • JULIE GODBOUT,

    1. Canada Research Chair in Forest and Environmental Genomics, Centre for Forest Research, Pavillon Charles-Eugène-Marchand, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada G1K 7P4,
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  • ARON FAZEKAS,

    1. OAC Herbarium, Biodiversity Institute of Ontario, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada N1G 2W1,
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  • CRAIG H. NEWTON,

    1. Vizon Scitec Inc., 3650 Wesbrook Mall, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada V6S 2L2,
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  • FRANCIS C. YEH,

    1. Department of Renewable Resources, Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G 2P5
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  • JEAN BOUSQUET

    1. Canada Research Chair in Forest and Environmental Genomics, Centre for Forest Research, Pavillon Charles-Eugène-Marchand, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada G1K 7P4,
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Jean Bousquet, Fax: (+1) (418) 656-7493; E-mail: bousquet@rsvs.ulaval.ca

Abstract

The Canadian side of the Pacific Northwest was almost entirely covered by ice during the last glacial maximum, which has induced vicariance and genetic population structure for several plant and animal taxa. Lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta Dougl. ex. Loud.) has a wide latitudinal and longitudinal distribution in the Pacific Northwest. Our main objective was to identify relictual signatures of glacial vicariance in the population structure of the species and search for evidence of distinct glacial refugia in the Pacific Northwest. A maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA minisatellite-like marker was used to decipher haplotype diversity in 91 populations of lodgepole pine located across the natural range. Overall population differentiation was sizeable (GST = 0.365 and RST = 0.568). Four relatively homogeneous groups of populations, possibly representative of as many genetically distinct glacial populations, were identified for the two main subspecies, ssp. latifolia and ssp. contorta. For ssp. contorta, one glacial lineage is suggested to have been located at high latitudes and possibly off the coast of mainland British Columbia (BC), while the other is considered to have been located south of the ice sheet along the Pacific coast. For ssp. latifolia, two genetically distinct glacial populations probably occurred south of the ice sheet: in the area bounded by the Cascades and Rocky Mountains ranges, and on the eastern side of the Rockies. A possible fifth refugium located in the Yukon may have also been present for ssp. latifolia. Zones of contact between these ancestral lineages were also apparent in interior and northern BC. These results indicate the role of the Queen Charlotte Islands and the Alexander Archipelago as a refugial zone for some Pacific Northwest species and the vicariant role played by the Cascades and the American Rocky Mountains during glaciation.

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