Botany and Geogenomics: constraining geological hypotheses in the Neotropics with large-scale genetic data derived from plants

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Authors

Ana Maria Bedoya

Abstract

Decades of empirical research have revealed how the geological history of our planet shaped plant evolution by establishing well-known patterns (e.g., how mountain uplift resulted in high rates of diversification and replicate radiations in montane plant taxa). Under this approach, information is passed from geology to botany by interpreting data in light of geological processes. Instead, in this synthesis, I describe how by integrating natural history, phylogenetics, and population genetics, botanical research can inform our understanding of past geological and climatic processes. This conceptual shift aligns with the goals of the emerging field of geogenomics. In the Neotropics, plant geogenomics is a powerful tool for the reciprocal exploration of two long standing questions in biology and geology: how the dynamic landscape of the region came to be and how it shaped the evolution of the richest flora. Current challenges that are specific to analytical approaches for plant geogenomics are discussed. I describe the scale at which various geological questions can be addressed from biological data, and what makes some groups of plants excellent model systems for geogenomics research. Although plant geogenomics is discussed with reference to the Neotropics, the recommendations given here for approaches to plant geogenomics can and should be expanded to exploring long-standing questions on how the earth evolved with the use of plant DNA.

DOI

https://doi.org/10.32942/X2W02F

Subjects

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences

Keywords

admixturebiogeography, demographic modeling, geogenomics, Geology, orogeny, phylogenetic networks, plant phylogenomics, biogeography, demographic modeling, geogenomics, Geology, Orogeny, phylogenetic networks, plant phylogenomics, admixture

Dates

Published: 2023-08-09 11:16

Last Updated: 2023-11-14 22:59

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License

CC-By Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International

Additional Metadata

Language:
English

Conflict of interest statement:
None

Data and Code Availability Statement:
Not applicable