Annals of Combinatorics

, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 295–310 | Cite as

Mathematical Aspects of Phylogenetic Groves

  • Mareike Fischer


The inference of new information on the relatedness of species by phylogenetic trees based on DNA data is one of the main challenges of modern biology. But despite all technological advances, DNA sequencing is still a time-consuming and costly process. Therefore, decision criteria would be desirable to decide a priori which data might contribute new information to the supertree which is not explicitly displayed by any input tree. A new concept, the so-called groves, to identify taxon sets with the potential to construct such informative supertrees was suggested by Ané et al. in 2009. But the important conjecture that maximal groves can easily be identified in a database remained unproved and was published on the Isaac Newton Institute’s list of open phylogenetic problems. In this paper, we show that the conjecture does not generally hold, but also introduce a new concept, namely, the 2-overlap groves, which overcomes this problem.


phylogenetic tree grove supertree compatibility 

Mathematics Subject Classification

92B05 94C15 


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Copyright information

© Springer Basel 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mathematics and Computer ScienceErnst Moritz Arndt University GreifswaldGreifswaldGermany

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