Journal of Plant Biology

, Volume 53, Issue 3, pp 222–232 | Cite as

Systematic Rearrangement of Korean Scirpus L. s.l. (Cyperaceae) as Inferred from Nuclear ITS and Chloroplast rbcL Sequences

  • Jongduk Jung
  • Hong-Keun Choi
Original Research


The genus Scirpus L. s.l. (Cyperaceae) has been accepted as a polyphyletic taxon by most plant taxonomists. This genus was separated into different genera by several different authors: Scirpus s. str., Trichophorum Pers., Bolboschoenus (Asch.) Palla, Schoenoplectus (Rchb.) Palla, and Schoenoplectiella Lye. The heterogeneity of Korean Scirpus s.l. has not yet been studied. We examined 17 taxa of Korean Scirpus s.l. by morphological characters and phylogenetic analyses based on nuclear ITS and chloroplast rbcL sequences. Phylogenetic analyses using maximum parsimony, maximum likelihood, and Bayesian method provided sufficient resolution. The phylogeny revealed the polyphyly of Korean Scirpus s.l. with five distinct clades. These clades correspond to Bolboschoenus, Schoenoplectus s.str., and Schoenoplectiella, Scirpus s.str., and Trichophorum, respectively. These five genera were delimited in terms of the morphology of tuber, bract, and inflorescence. By virtue of our findings, we suggest that the 17 taxa of Korean Scirpus s.l. should be placed into five genera as follows: Bolboschoenus (two species), Schoenoplectus (three species), Schoenoplectiella (six species), Scirpus s.str. (five species), and Trichophorum (one species).


Scirpus Bolboschoenus Schoenoplectus Trichophorum Schoenoplectiella Cyperaceae ITS rbcL 



The authors thank to two anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments on the manuscript. This work was supported by National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean Government (MEST) (KRF-2009-0088457).

Supplementary material

12374_2010_9109_MOESM1_ESM.doc (59 kb)
Supplementary Table S1 Used taxa with a GenBank accession number in additional maximum parsimony analysis. Bold letters indicate species of Scirpus s.l., and asterisks indicate type species of each separated genera. (DOC 59 kb)
12374_2010_9109_MOESM2_ESM.jpg (634 kb)
Supplementary Fig. S1 Strict consensus of 72,514 most parsimonious trees based on rbcL sequence dataset (length = 459 steps, CI = 0.59, and RI = 0.84). The five independent clades including Korean Scirpus s.l. is an alternative to the clades in Fig. 2 of this manuscript. Aligned data has 1,293 total characters with 234 variable characters including 139 parsimony informative characters. Maximum parsimony analysis parameter is that gaps are treated as missing and character-state optimization with ACCTRAN (JPEG 633 kb)


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Copyright information

© The Botanical Society of Korea 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biological ScienceAjou UniversitySuwonSouth Korea

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