14 Works

An explicit test of Pleistocene survival in peripheral versus nunatak refugia in two high mountain plant species

Da Pan, Wolfgang Willner, Karl Hülber & Gerald M. Schneeweiss
Pleistocene climate fluctuations had profound influence on the biogeographic history of many biota. As large areas in higher latitudes and high mountain ranges were covered by glaciers, biota were forced either to peripheral refugia (and possibly beyond to lowland refugia) or to interior refugia (nunataks), but nunatak survival remains controversial as it solely relies on correlative genetic evidence. Here, we test the nunatak hypothesis using two high alpine plant species of contrasting pollination modes (insect-pollinated...

Data from: Exploring actinobacteria associated with rhizosphere and endosphere of the native Alpine medicinal plant Leontopodium nivale Subspecies alpinum

Martina Oberhofer, Jaqueline Hess, Marlene Leutgeb, Florian Gössnitzer, Thomas Rattei, Christoph Wawrosch & Sergey B. Zotchev
The rhizosphere of plants is enriched in nutrients facilitating growth of microorganisms, some of which are recruited as endophytes. Endophytes, especially Actinobacteria, are known to produce a plethora of bioactive compounds. We hypothesized that Leontopodium nivale subsp. alpinum (Edelweiss), a rare alpine medicinal plant, may serve as yet untapped source for uncommon Actinobacteria associated with this plant. Rhizosphere soil of native Alpine plants was used, after physical and chemical pretreatments, for isolating Actinobacteria. Isolates were...

Data from: Difference in reproductive mode rather than ploidy explains niche differentiation in sympatric sexual and apomictic populations of Potentilla puberula

Henar Alonso-Marcos, Flavia Domizia Nardi, Susanne Scheffknecht, Andreas Tribsch, Karl Hülber & Christoph Dobes
Apomicts tend to have larger geographical distributional ranges and to occur in ecologically more extreme environments than their sexual progenitors. However, the expression of apomixis is typically linked to polyploidy. Thus, it is a priori not clear whether intrinsic effects related to the change in the reproductive mode or rather in the ploidy drive ecological differentiation. We used sympatric sexual and apomictic populations of Potentilla puberula to test for ecological differentiation. To distinguish the effects...

Data from: The influence of fluctuating population densities on evolutionary dynamics

Hanja Pisa, Joachim Hermisson & Jitka Polechova
The causes and consequences of fluctuating population densities are an important topic in ecological literature. Yet, the effects of such fluctuations on maintenance of variation in spatially structured populations have received little analytic treatment. We analyze what happens when two habitats coupled by migration not only differ in their trade-offs in selection but also in their demographic stability -- and show that equilibrium allele frequencies can change significantly due to ecological feedback arising from locally...

Data from: Ancestral remnants or peripheral segregates? Phylogenetic relationships of two narrowly endemic Euphrasia species (Orobanchaceae) from the eastern European Alps

Da Pan, Peter Schönswetter, Tim Moser, Ernst Vitek & Gerald M. Schneeweiss
Endemism in mountain ranges is considered to be the result of a number of factors, including restriction to refugia during Pleistocene climate fluctuations. However, isolation in glacial refugia cannot explain the origin of narrowly endemic taxa restricted to formerly heavily glaciated areas. Here, we investigate the phylogeny of two narrowly endemic species, Euphrasia inopinata and E. sinuata (Orobanchaceae), found exclusively in formerly heavily glaciated areas of the eastern European Alps. As both species are diploid...

Data from: Beta diversity and oligarchic dominance in the tropical Forests of Southern Costa Rica

Albert Morera-Beita, Damián Sánchez, Wolfgang Wanek, Florian Hofhansl, Huber Werner, Eduardo Chacón-Madrigal, Jorge L. Montero-Muñoz & Fernando Silla.
Recent studies have reported a consistent pattern of strong dominance of a small subset of tree species in Neotropical forests. These species have been called ‘hyperdominant’ at large geographical scales and ‘oligarchs’ at regional-landscape scales when being abundant and frequent. Forest community assembly is shaped by environmental factors and stochastic processes, but so far the contribution of oligarchic species to the variation of community composition (i.e. beta diversity) remains poorly known. To that end, we...

Data from: Genomic signatures of GPCR expansions reveal functional transitions in the evolution of cephalopod signal transduction

Elena A. Ritschard, Robert R. Fitak, Oleg Simakov & Sönke Johnsen
Coleoid cephalopods show unique morphological and neural novelties, such as arms with tactile and chemosensory suckers and a large complex nervous system. The evolution of such cephalopod novelties has been attributed at a genomic level to independent gene family expansions, yet the exact association and the evolutionary timing remain unclear. In the octopus genome, one such expansion occurred in the G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) repertoire, a superfamily of proteins that mediate signal transduction. Here we...

Data from: Moth assemblages in Costa Rica rain forest mirror small‐scale topographic heterogeneity

Dominik Rabl, Brigitte Gottsberger, Gunnar Brehm, Florian Hofhansl & Konrad Fiedler
In many tropical lowland rainforests, topographic variation increases environmental heterogeneity thus contributing to the extraordinary biodiversity of tropical lowland forests. While a growing number of studies have addressed effects of topographic differences on tropical insect communities at regional scales (e.g., along extensive elevational gradients), surprisingly little is known about topographic effects at smaller spatial scales. The present study investigates moth assemblages in a topographically heterogeneous lowland rainforest landscape, at distances of less than a few...

Seasonal shifts of biodiversity patterns and species’ elevation ranges of butterflies and moths along a complete rainforest elevational gradient on Mount Cameroon

Vincent Maicher, Szabolcs Sáfián, Mercy Murkwe, Sylvain Delabye, Łukasz Przybyłowicz, Pavel Potocký, Ishmeal N. Kobe, Štěpán Janeček, Jan E. J. Mertens, Eric B. Fokam, Tomasz Pyrcz, Jiří Doležal, Jan Altman, David Hořák, Konrad Fiedler & Robert Tropek
Aim Temporal dynamics of biodiversity along tropical elevational gradients are unknown. We studied seasonal changes of Lepidoptera biodiversity along the only complete forest elevational gradient in the Afrotropics. We focused on shifts of species richness patterns, seasonal turnover of communities, and seasonal shifts of species’ elevational ranges, the latter often serving as an indicator of the global change effects on mountain ecosystems. Location Mount Cameroon, Cameroon. Taxon Butterflies and moths (Lepidoptera) Methods We quantitatively sampled...

Data from: Is the incidence of survival in interior Pleistocene refugia (nunataks) underestimated? Phylogeography of the high mountain plant Androsace alpina (Primulaceae) in the European Alps revisited

Peter Schönswetter & Gerald M. Schneeweiss
Temperate mountain ranges such as the European Alps have been strongly affected by the Pleistocene glaciations. Glacial advances forced biota into refugia, which were situated either at the periphery of mountain ranges or in their interior. Whereas in the Alps peripheral refugia have been repeatedly and congruently identified, support for the latter scenario, termed “nunatak hypothesis”, is still limited and no general pattern is recognizable yet. Here, we test the hypothesis of nunatak survival for...

Data from: GHOST: Recovering Historical Signal from Heterotachously-evolved Sequence Alignments

Stephen M. Crotty, Bui Quang Minh, Nigel G. Bean, Barbara R. Holland, Jonathan Tuke, Lars S. Jermiin & Arndt Von Haeseler
Molecular sequence data that have evolved under the influence of heterotachous evolutionary processes are known to mislead phylogenetic inference. We introduce the General Heterogeneous evolution On a Single Topology (GHOST) model of sequence evolution, implemented under a maximum-likelihood framework in the phylogenetic program IQ-TREE (http://www.iqtree.org). Simulations show that using the GHOST model, IQ-TREE can accurately recover the tree topology, branch lengths, and substitution model parameters from heterotachously evolved sequences. We investigate the performance of the...

Data from: Competition is crucial for social comparison processes in long-tailed macaques

Stefanie Keupp, Rowan Titchener, Thomas Bugnyar, Thomas Mussweiler & Julia Fischer
Humans modulate their self-evaluations and behaviour as a function of conspecific presence and performance. In this study we tested for the presence of human-like social comparison effects in long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis). The monkeys’ task was to extract food from an apparatus by pulling drawers within reach and we measured latency between drawer-pulls. Subjects either worked on the task with a partner who could access the apparatus from an adjacent cage, worked in the absence...

Data from: Old World and New World Phasmatodea: phylogenomics resolve the evolutionary history of stick and leaf insects

Sabrina Simon, Harald Letsch, Sarah Bank, Thomas R. Buckley, Alexander Donath, Shanlin Liu, Ryuichiro Machida, Karen Meusemann, Bernhard Misof, Lars Podsiadlowski, Xin Zhou, Benjamin Wipfler & Sven Bradler
Phasmatodea comprises over 3,000 extant species and stands out as one of the last remaining insect orders for which a robust, higher-level phylogenetic hypothesis is lacking. New research suggests that the extant diversity is the result of a surprisingly recent and rapid radiation that has been difficult to resolve with standard Sanger sequence data. In order to resolve the early branching events of stick and leaf insects, we analyzed transcriptomes from 61 species, including 38...

Data from: Differences in combinatorial calls among the 3 elephant species cannot be explained by phylogeny

Michael A. Pardo, Joyce H. Poole, Angela S. Stoeger, Peter H. Wrege, Caitlin E. O'Connell-Rodwell, Udaha Kapugedara Padmalal & Shermin De Silva
Understanding why related species combine calls in different ways could provide insight into the selection pressures on the evolution of combinatorial communication. African savannah elephants (Loxodonta africana), African forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis), and Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) all combine broadband calls (roars, barks, and cries) and low-frequency calls (rumbles) into single utterances known as “combination calls.” We investigated whether the structure of such calls differs among species and whether any differences are better explained by...

Registration Year

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  • University of Vienna
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  • Stanford University School of Medicine
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  • Open University of Sri Lanka
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