, Volume 172, Issue 1-4, pp 83-97

A phylogenetic analysis of chloroplast DNA restriction site variation inPoaceae subfam.Pooideae

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A phylogenetic analysis was conducted on chloroplast DNA restriction site variation in 34 genera of grasses (familyPoaceae), including 28 genera from subfam.Pooideae (representing tribesAveneae, Brachypodieae, Bromeae, Meliceae, Poeae, Stipeae, andTriticeae) and representatives of three other subfamilies,Arundinoideae, Oryzoideae, andPanicoideae. Analyses of all 34 genera always distinguishedPooideae as monophyletic, regardless of which nonpooid genus functioned as outgroup; six separate analyses of all 28 pooid genera, each including one of the six nonpooid genera as outgroup, resolved five identically-constituted clades withinPooideae (in four cases), or (in the other two cases) yielded results that were less well resolved, but not in conflict with those of the other four analyses. The four best-resolved analyses distinguishedMeliceae as the earliest diverging lineage withinPooideae, andStipeae as the next. Above the point of divergence ofStipeae is a dichotomy between supertribeTriticodae (including tribesBrachypodieae, Bromeae, andTriticeae), and a clade comprisingPoeae andAveneae. The analysis supports some tribal realignments, specifically the assignment ofBriza, Chascolytrum, Microbriza, andTorreyochloa toAveneae, andArctagrostis, Catabrosa, andSesleria toPoeae. The analysis also suggests that the pooid spikelet (i.e., glumes shorter than lemmas and florets two or more) is plesiomorphic inPooideae, and that spikelets with one floret, and those with glumes longer than the first lemma, each have evolved more than once withinPooideae. Results also indicate that small chromosomes and chromosome numbers based on x=c. 10−12 are plesiomorphic withinPooideae. Alternative states of these characters (chromosomes large, chromosome numbers based on x=7) are interpreted as synapomorphies or parallelisms of clades that includeTriticodae, Aveneae, andPoeae. Lanceolate lodicule shape may be a synapomorphy of the clade that includesStipeae, Triticodae, Aveneae, andPoeae, and loss of lodicule vascularization a synapomorphy of the entirePooideae.