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Am J Bot. 2011 Jun;98(6):946-55. doi: 10.3732/ajb.1000367. Epub 2011 May 31.

Patterns of hybridization between diploid and derived allotetraploid species of Dactylorhiza (Orchidaceae) co-occurring in Belgium.

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1
Biology Department, Laboratory of Plant Ecology, University of Leuven, Kasteelpark Arenberg 31, B-3001 Heverlee, Belgium. koen.dehert@bio.kuleuven.be

Abstract

PREMISE OF THE STUDY:

Although the potential for gene flow between species with large differences in chromosome numbers has long been recognized, only few studies have thoroughly investigated in situ hybridization across taxa with different ploidy levels. We combined morphological, cytological, and genetic marker data with pollination experiments to investigate the degree, direction, and spatial pattern of hybridization between the diploid Dactylorhiza incarnata and its tetraploid derivative, D. praetermissa.

METHODS:

To identify hybrids, 169 individuals were genotyped using AFLPs and morphologically characterized. Individuals were clustered on the basis of their AFLP profile using the program Structure. To reduce the dimensionality of the plant-trait matrix, PCA was applied. The origin of suspected hybrid individuals was verified using flow cytometry. An AMOVA and spatial autocorrelation analysis were used to indirectly infer the extent of gene flow.

KEY RESULTS:

Only five individuals were regarded as putative hybrids on the basis of the AFLP data; all had been assigned to the D. praetermissa morphotype. Only one had deviating DNA content and was presumably a triploid. High Φ(ST) values between different subpopulations and significant spatial genetic structure were observed, suggesting localized gene flow.

CONCLUSIONS:

Using combined data to study hybridization between D. incarnata and D. praetermissa, very few unequivocal hybrids were observed. We propose several non-mutually exclusive explanations. Localized pollen flow, in combination with different microhabitat preferences, is probably one of the reasons for the low frequency of hybrids. Also, the triploid first-generation hybrids may experience difficulties in successful establishment, as a result of genic incompatibilities.

PMID:
21653507
DOI:
10.3732/ajb.1000367
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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