These authors contributed equally to this work.
Menispermaceae and the diversification of tropical rainforests near the Cretaceous–Paleogene boundary
Article first published online: 30 APR 2012
© 2012 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2012 New Phytologist Trust
Volume 195, Issue 2, pages 470–478, July 2012
How to Cite
Wang, W., Ortiz, R. D. C., Jacques, F. M.B., Xiang, X.-G., Li, H.-L., Lin, L., Li, R.-Q., Liu, Y., Soltis, P. S., Soltis, D. E. and Chen, Z.-D. (2012), Menispermaceae and the diversification of tropical rainforests near the Cretaceous–Paleogene boundary. New Phytologist, 195: 470–478. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-8137.2012.04158.x
- Issue published online: 15 JUN 2012
- Article first published online: 30 APR 2012
- Received: 19 January 2012, Accepted: 20 March 2012
- K–Pg mass extinction;
- modern tropical rainforests;
- •Modern tropical rainforests have the highest biodiversity of terrestrial biomes and are restricted to three low-latitude areas. However, the actual timeframe during which tropical rainforests began to appear on a global scale has been intensely disputed. Here, we used the moonseed family (Menispermaceae), an important physiognomic and structural component of tropical rainforests on a worldwide basis, to obtain new insights into the diversification of this biome.
- •We integrated phylogenetic, biogeographic and molecular dating methods to analyse temporal and spatial patterns of global diversification in Menispermaceae.
- •Importantly, a burst of moonseed diversification occurred in a narrow window of time, which coincides with the Cretaceous–Paleogene (K–Pg) boundary. Our data also suggest multiple independent migrations from a putative ancestral area of Indo-Malay into other tropical regions.
- •Our data for Menispermaceae suggest that modern tropical rainforests may have appeared almost synchronously throughout the three major tropical land areas close to, or immediately following, the K–Pg mass extinction.