Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 283, Issue 3–4, pp 165–177 | Cite as

Phylogenetic relationships and infrageneric classification of Epidendrum subgenus Amphiglottium (Laeliinae, Orchidaceae)

  • Fábio PinheiroEmail author
  • Samantha Koehler
  • Andréa Macêdo Corrêa
  • Maria Luiza Faria Salatino
  • Antonio Salatino
  • Fábio de Barros
Original Article


Epidendrum L. is the largest genus of Orchidaceae in the Neotropical region; it has an impressive morphological diversification, which imposes difficulties in delimitation of both infrageneric and interspecific boundaries. In this study, we review infrageneric boundaries within the subgenus Amphiglottium and try to contribute to the understanding of morphological diversification and taxa delimitation within this group. We tested the monophyly of the subgenus Amphiglottium sect. Amphiglottium, expanding previous phylogenetic investigations and reevaluated previous infrageneric classifications proposed. Sequence data from the trnL-trnF region were analyzed with both parsimony and maximum likelihood criteria. AFLP markers were also obtained and analyzed with phylogenetic and principal coordinate analyses. Additionally, we obtained chromosome numbers for representative species within the group. The results strengthen the monophyly of the subgenus Amphiglottium but do not support the current classification system proposed by previous authors. Only section Tuberculata comprises a well-supported monophyletic group, with sections Carinata and Integra not supported. Instead of morphology, biogeographical and ecological patterns are reflected in the phylogenetic signal in this group. This study also confirms the large variability of chromosome numbers for the subgenus Amphiglottium (numbers ranging from 2n = 24 to 2n = 240), suggesting that polyploidy and hybridization are probably important mechanisms of speciation within the group.


Orchidaceae Epidendrum Subgenus Amphiglottium trnL-trnF intergenic spacer AFLP marker 



We thank R. Custódio, J. Leônidas, J. Batista, L.P. Félix, J. Lima-Verde, N. von Atzingen, M. Peixoto, C.N. Fraga, M. Bocayuva, M. Moraes, E.C. Smidt, J. Stancik, G. Lopes, M.A. Farinaccio, and M. Trovó for the help in collecting plant specimens; L.B. Mota, M.M.S. Ferreira, C. Rodrigues, C. Furlan, and S. Blanco for lab assistance; E.L.M. Catharino, R.P. Peres, H. Michelan, and R. Chaves for supporting orchid cultivation at Instituto de Botânica de São Paulo; Naciolinda Obers for help in translating German texts; L.G. Lohman, G.J. Shepherd, E. Hágsater, and M.A. Soto Arenas for valuable comments on previous versions of this manuscript. F.P. and S.K. received fellowships from Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo, FAPESP (03/03063-1 and 06/55121-3, respectively), F.B. received a grant of the Conselho Nacional do Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico, CNPq (303962/2004-6). This study was funded by a grant from FAPESP to FB (03/03062-5).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fábio Pinheiro
    • 1
    Email author
  • Samantha Koehler
    • 2
  • Andréa Macêdo Corrêa
    • 3
  • Maria Luiza Faria Salatino
    • 1
  • Antonio Salatino
    • 1
  • Fábio de Barros
    • 3
  1. 1.Departamento de Botânica, Instituto de BiociênciasUniversidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Departamento de Ciências BiológicasUniversidade Federal de São PauloDiademaBrazil
  3. 3.Instituto de BotânicaSeção de Orquidario do EstadoSão PauloBrazil

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