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J Plant Res. 2012 Mar;125(2):207-21. doi: 10.1007/s10265-011-0428-8. Epub 2011 Jun 16.

Comparative phylogeography of four component species of deciduous broad-leaved forests in Japan based on chloroplast DNA variation.

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Department of Biology, Chiba University, 1-33 Yayoi-cho, Inage-ku, Chiba 263-8522, Japan.


A phylogeographic study of four tree species (Padus grayana, Euonymus oxyphyllus, Magnolia hypoleuca, and Carpinus laxiflora) growing in Japanese deciduous broad-leaved forests was conducted based on chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) variations. Using nucleotide sequences of 702-1,059 bp of intergenic spacers of cpDNA, 20, 27, eight, and eight haplotypes were detected among 251, 251, 226, and 262 individuals sampled from 67, 79, 75, and 71 populations of the above species, respectively. The geographical pattern of the cpDNA variations was highly structured in each species, and the following three regional populations were genetically highly differentiated among all four species: (1) the Sea of Japan-side area, (2) the Kanto region, and (3) southwestern Japan. Based on some interspecific similarities among the phylogeographic patterns, the following migration scenario of Japanese deciduous broad-leaved forests was postulated. During the last glacial maximum (LGM), the forests were separately distributed in six regions. After LGM, as the climate warmed, the forests in eastern Japan separately expanded from each of the refugia along the Sea of Japan-side or along the Pacific Ocean-side. In contrast, those in southwestern Japan retreated and moved to high altitudes from each of the continuous forests.

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