Contributors: Eliason, Chad, Andersen, Michael, Hackett, Shannon
... Color is among the most striking features of organisms, varying not only in spectral properties like hue and brightness, but also in where and how it is produced on the body. Different combinations of colors on a bird’s body are important in both environmental and social contexts. Previous comparative studies have treated plumage patches individually or derived plumage complexity scores from color measurements across a bird’s body. However, these approaches do not consider the multivariate nature of plumages (allowing for plumage to evolve as a whole) or account for interpatch distances. Here, we leverage a rich toolkit used in historical biogeography to assess color pattern evolution in a cosmopolitan radiation of birds, kingfishers (Aves: Alcedinidae). We demonstrate the utility of this approach and test hypotheses about the tempo and mode of color evolution in kingfishers. Our results highlight the importance of considering interpatch distances in understanding macroevolutionary trends in color diversity and demonstrate how historical biogeography models are a useful way to model plumage color pattern evolution. Furthermore, they show that distinct color mechanisms (pigments or structural colors) spread across the body in different ways and at different rates. Specifically, net rates are higher for structural colors than pigment-based colors. Together, our study suggests a role for both development and selection in driving extraordinary color pattern diversity in kingfishers. We anticipate this approach will be useful for modeling other complex phenotypes besides color, such as parasite evolution across the body.
Data from: Restriction-site-associated DNA sequencing reveals a cryptic viburnum species on the North American coastal plain
Contributors: Spriggs, Elizabeth L., Eaton, Deren A.R., Sweeney, Patrick W., Schlutius, Caroline, Edwards, Erika J., Donoghue, Michael J.
... Species are the starting point for most studies of ecology and evolution, but the proper circumscription of species can be extremely difficult in morphologically variable lineages, and there are still few convincing examples of molecularly-informed species delimitation in plants. We focus here on the Viburnum nudum complex, a highly variable clade that is widely distributed in eastern North America. Taxonomic treatments have mostly divided this complex into northern (V. nudum var. cassinoides) and southern (V. nudum var. nudum) entities, but additional names have been proposed. We used multiple lines of evidence, including RADseq, morphological, and geographic data, to test how many independently evolving lineages exist within the V. nudum complex. Genetic clustering and phylogenetic methods revealed three distinct groups—one lineage that is highly divergent, and two others that are recently diverged and morphologically similar. A combination of evidence that includes reciprocal monophyly, lack of introgression, and discrete rather than continuous patterns of variation supports the recognition of all three lineages as separate species. These results identify a surprising case of cryptic diversity in which two broadly sympatric species have consistently been lumped in taxonomic treatments. The clarity of our findings is directly related to the dense sampling and high quality genetic data in this study. We argue that there is a critical need for carefully sampled and integrative species delimitation studies to clarify species boundaries even in well-known plant lineages. Studies following the model that we have developed here are likely to identify many more cryptic lineages and will fundamentally improve our understanding of plant speciation and patterns of species richness.
Data from: A new phylogenetic hypothesis of turtles with implications for the timing and number of evolutionary transitions to marine lifestyles in the group
Contributors: Evers, Serjoscha W., Benson, Roger B. J.
... Evolutionary transitions to marine habitats occurred frequently among Mesozoic reptiles. Only one such clade survives to the present: sea turtles (Chelonioidea). Other marine turtles originated during the Mesozoic, but uncertain affinities of key fossils have obscured the number of transitions to marine life, and the timing of the origin of marine adaptation in chelonioids. Phylogenetic studies support either a highly‐inclusive chelonioid total‐group including fossil marine clades from the Jurassic and Cretaceous (e.g. protostegids, thalassochelydians, sandownids) or a less inclusive chelonioid total‐group excluding those clades. Under this paradigm, these clades belong outside Cryptodira, and represent at least one additional evolutionary transition to marine life in turtles. We present a new phylogenetic hypothesis informed by high resolution computed tomographic data of living and fossil taxa. Besides a well‐supported Chelonioidea, which includes protostegids, we recover a previously unknown clade of stem‐group turtles, Angolachelonia, which includes the Late Jurassic thalassochelydians, and the Cretaceous–Palaeogene sandownids. Accounting for the Triassic Odontochelys, our results indicate three independent evolutionary transitions to marine life in non‐pleurodiran turtles (plus an additional two‐three in pleurodires). Among all independent origins of marine habits, a pelagic ecology only evolved once, among chelonioids. All turtle groups that independently invaded marine habitats in the Jurassic–Cretaceous (chelonioids, angolachelonians, bothremydid pleurodires) survived the Cretaceous–Palaeogene mass extinction event. This highlights extensive survival of marine turtles compared to other marine reptiles. Furthermore, deeply‐nested clades such as chelonioids are found by the middle Early Cretaceous, suggesting a rapid diversification of crown‐group turtles during the Early Cretaceous.
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Data from: Phylogenomic mining of the mints reveals multiple mechanisms contributing to the evolution of chemical diversity in Lamiaceae
Contributors: Mint Evolutionary Genomics Consortium
... The evolution of chemical complexity has been a major driver of plant diversification, with novel compounds serving as key innovations. The species-rich mint family (Lamiaceae) produces an enormous variety of compounds that act as attractants and defense molecules in nature and are used widely by humans as flavor additives, fragrances, and anti-herbivory agents. To elucidate the mechanisms by which such diversity evolved, we combined leaf transcriptome data from 48 Lamiaceae species and four outgroups with a robust phylogeny and chemical analyses of three terpenoid classes (monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes, iridoids) that share and compete for precursors. Our integrated chemical-genomic-phylogenetic approach revealed that: 1) gene family expansion rather than increased enzyme promiscuity of terpene synthases is correlated with mono- and sesqui-terpene diversity; 2) differential expression of core genes within the iridoid biosynthetic pathway is associated with iridoid presence/absence; 3) generally, production of iridoids and canonical monoterpenes appeared to be inversely correlated; and 4) iridoid biosynthesis was significantly associated with expression of geraniol synthase, which diverts metabolic flux away from canonical monoterpenes, suggesting that competition for common precursors can be a central control point in specialized metabolism. These results suggest that multiple mechanisms contributed to the evolution of chemodiversity in this economically important family. ----------MINT EVOLUTIONARY GENOMICS CONSORTIUM MEMBERS: Benoît Boachon¹, C. Robin Buell², Emily Crisovan², Natalia Dudareva¹, Nicolas Garcia³*, Grant Godden² ³, Laura Henry¹, Mohamed O. Kamileen⁴, Heather Rose Kates³, Matthew B. Kilgore¹, Benjamin R. Lichman⁴, Evgeny V. Mavrodiev³, Linsey Newton², Carlos Rodriguez-Lopez⁴, Sarah E. O’Connor⁴, Douglas Soltis³ ⁵, Pamela Soltis³, Brieanne Vaillancourt², Krystle Wiegert-Rininger², Dongyan Zhao² ---------- ¹Department of Biochemistry, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2063, USA ²Department of Plant Biology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA ³Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, USA ⁴The John Innes Centre, Department of Biological Chemistry, Norwich, NR4 7UH, UK ⁵Department of Biology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, USA ---------- Current address: *Herbario EIF/Laboratorio de Sistemática y Evolución de Plantas, Facultad de Ciencias Forestales y de la Conservación de la Naturaleza, Universidad de Chile, Av. Santa Rosa 11315, La Pintana, Santiago, Chile ---------- For Correspondence: C. Robin Buell; firstname.lastname@example.org; Department of Plant Biology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA; 517-353-5597
Data from: Determining the genetic basis of anthracycline-cardiotoxicity by response QTL mapping in induced cardiomyocytes
Contributors: Knowles, David A., Burrows, Courtney K., Blischak, John D., Patterson, Kristen M., Serie, Daniel J., Norton, Nadine, Ober, Carole, Pritchard, Jonathan K., Gilad, Yoav
... Anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity (ACT) is a key limiting factor in setting optimal chemotherapy regimes, with almost half of patients expected to develop congestive heart failure given high doses. However, the genetic basis of sensitivity to anthracyclines remains unclear. We created a panel of iPSC-derived cardiomyocytes from 45 individuals and performed RNA-seq after 24h exposure to varying doxorubicin dosages. The transcriptomic response is substantial: the majority of genes are differentially expressed and over 6000 genes show evidence of differential splicing, the later driven by reduced splicing fidelity in the presence of doxorubicin. We show that inter-individual variation in transcriptional response is predictive of in vitro cell damage, which in turn is associated with in vivo ACT risk. We detect 447 response-expression QTLs and 42 response-splicing QTLs, which are enriched in lower ACT GWAS p-values, supporting the in vivo relevance of our map of gene tic regulation of cellular response to anthracyclines.
Contributors: Dupuis, Julian, Bremer, Forest, Kauwe, Angela, San Jose, Michael, Leblanc, Luc, Rubinoff, Daniel, Geib, Scott
... High-throughput sequencing has fundamentally changed how molecular phylogenetic datasets are assembled, and phylogenomic datasets commonly contain 50-100-fold more loci than those generated using traditional Sanger-based approaches. Here, we demonstrate a new approach for building phylogenomic datasets using single tube, highly multiplexed amplicon sequencing, which we name HiMAP (Highly Multiplexed Amplicon-based Phylogenomics), and present bioinformatic pipelines for locus selection based on genomic and transcriptomic data resources and post-sequencing consensus calling and alignment. This method is inexpensive and amenable to sequencing a large number (hundreds) of taxa simultaneously, requires minimal hands-on time at the bench (150,000 bp concatenated alignment, ~20% missing character sites across all individuals and amplicons) contained >40,000 phylogenetically informative characters, and although some discordance was observed between analyses, it provided unparalleled resolution of many phylogenetic relationships in this group. Most notably, we found high support for the generic status of Zeugodacus and the sister relationship between Dacus and Zeugodacus. We discuss HiMAP, with regard to its molecular and bioinformatic strengths, and the insight the resulting dataset provides into relationships of this diverse insect group.
Contributors: Burbrink, Frank T., Gehara, Marcelo
... Most phylogenies are typically represented as purely bifurcating. However, as genomic data has become more common in phylogenetic studies, it is not unusual to find reticulation among terminal lineages or among internal nodes (deep time reticulation; DTR). In these situations, gene flow must have happened in the same or adjacent geographic areas for these DTRs to have occurred and therefore biogeographic reconstruction should provide similar area estimates for parental nodes, provided extinction or dispersal has not eroded these patterns. We examine the phylogeny of the widely distributed New World kingsnakes (Lampropeltis), determine if DTR is present in this group, and estimate the ancestral area for reticulation. Importantly, we develop a new method that uses coalescent simulations in a machine learning framework to show conclusively that this phylogeny is best represented as reticulating at deeper time. Using joint probabilities of ancestral area reconstructions on the bifurcating parental lineages from the reticulating node, we show that this reticulation likely occurred in northwestern Mexico/southwestern US and subsequently led to the diversification of the Mexican kingsnakes. This region has been previously identified as an area important for understanding speciation and secondary contact with gene flow in snakes and other squamates. This research shows that phylogenetic reticulation is common, even in well-studied groups, and that the geographic scope of ancient hybridization is recoverable.
Contributors: Espeland, Marianne, Breinholt, Jesse W., Willmott, Keith R., Warren, Andrew D., Vila, Roger, Toussaint, Emmanuel F. A., Maunsell, Sarah C., Aduse-Poku, Kwaku, Talavera, Gerard, Eastwood, Rodney
... Butterflies (Papilionoidea), with over 18,000 described species , have captivated naturalists and scientists for centuries. They play a central role in the study of speciation, community ecology, biogeography, climate change, and plant-insect interactions and include many model organisms and pest species [2, 3]. However, a robust higher-level phylogenetic framework is lacking. To fill this gap, we inferred a dated phylogeny by analyzing the first phylogenomic dataset, including 352 loci (> 150,000 bp) from 207 species representing 98% of tribes, a 35-fold increase in gene sampling and 3-fold increase in taxon sampling over previous studies . Most data were generated with a new anchored hybrid enrichment (AHE)  gene kit (BUTTERFLY1.0) that includes both new and frequently used (e.g., ) informative loci, enabling direct comparison and future dataset merging with previous studies. Butterflies originated around 119 million years ago (mya) in the late Cretaceous, but most extant lineages diverged after the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) mass-extinction 65 mya. Our analyses support swallowtails (Papilionidae) as sister to all other butterflies, followed by skippers (Hesperiidae) + the nocturnal butterflies (Hedylidae) as sister to the remainder, indicating a secondary reversal from diurnality to nocturnality. The whites (Pieridae) were strongly supported as sister to brush-footed butterflies (Nymphalidae) and blues + metalmarks (Lycaenidae and Riodinidae). Ant association independently evolved once in Lycaenidae and twice in Riodinidae. This study overturns prior notions of the taxon’s evolutionary history, as many long-recognized subfamilies and tribes are para- or polyphyletic. It also provides a much-needed backbone for a revised classification of butterflies and for future comparative studies including genome evolution and ecology.
Contributors: Behrman, Emily L., Howick, Virginia M., Kapun, Martin, Staubach, Fabian, Bergland, Alan O., Petrov, Dmitri A., Lazzaro, Brian P., Schmidt, Paul S.
... Understanding the rate of evolutionary change and the genetic architecture that facilitates rapid adaptation is a current challenge in evolutionary biology. Comparative studies show that genes with immune function are among the most rapidly evolving genes across a range of taxa. Here, we use immune defence in natural populations of Drosophila melanogaster to understand the rate of evolution in natural populations and the genetics underlying rapid change. We probed the immune system using the natural pathogens Enterococcus faecalis and Providencia rettgeri to measure post-infection survival and bacterial load of wild D. melanogaster populations collected across seasonal time along a latitudinal transect along eastern North America (Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Virginia). There are pronounced and repeatable changes in the immune response over the approximately 10 generations between spring and autumn collections, with a significant but less distinct difference observed among geographical locations. Genes with known immune function are not enriched among alleles that cycle with seasonal time, but the immune function of a subset of seasonally cycling alleles in immune genes was tested using reconstructed outbred populations. We find that flies containing seasonal alleles in Thioester-containing protein 3 (Tep3) have different functional responses to infection and that epistatic interactions among seasonal Tep3 and Drosomycin-like 6 (Dro6) alleles underlie the immune phenotypes observed in natural populations. This rapid, cyclic response to seasonal environmental pressure broadens our understanding of the complex ecological and genetic interactions determining the evolution of immune defence in natural populations.
Data from: Greater pollination generalization is not associated with reduced constraints on corolla shape in Antillean plants
Contributors: Joly, Simon, Lambert, François, Alexandre, Hermine, Clavel, Julien, Léveillé-Bourret, Étienne, Clark, John L.
... Flowers show important structural variation as reproductive organs but the evolutionary forces underlying this diversity are still poorly understood. In animal-pollinated species, flower shape is strongly fashioned by selection imposed by pollinators, which is expected to vary according to guilds of effective pollinators. Using the Antillean subtribe Gesneriinae (Gesneriaceae), we tested the hypothesis that pollination specialists pollinated by one functional type of pollinator have maintained more similar corolla shapes through time due to more constant and stronger selection constraints compared to species with more generalist pollination strategies. Using geometric morphometrics and evolutionary models, we showed that the corolla of hummingbird specialists, bat specialists, and species with a mixed-pollination strategy (pollinated by hummingbirds and bats; thus a more generalist strategy) have distinct shapes and that these shapes have evolved under evolutionary constraints. However, we did not find support for greater disparity in corolla shape of more generalist species. This could be because the corolla shape of more generalist species in subtribe Gesneriinae, which has evolved multiple times, is finely adapted to be effectively pollinated by both bats and hummingbirds. These results suggest that ecological generalization is not necessarily associated with relaxed selection constraints.