Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Biol Lett. 2016 Apr;12(4). pii: 20160081. doi: 10.1098/rsbl.2016.0081.

Bayesian methods outperform parsimony but at the expense of precision in the estimation of phylogeny from discrete morphological data.

Author information

1
School of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, Life Sciences Building, Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ, UK.
2
School of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, Life Sciences Building, Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ, UK School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, Life Sciences Building, Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ, UK.
3
School of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, Life Sciences Building, Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ, UK School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, Life Sciences Building, Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ, UK davide.pisani@bristol.ac.uk.
4
School of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, Life Sciences Building, Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ, UK phil.donoghue@bristol.ac.uk.

Abstract

Different analytical methods can yield competing interpretations of evolutionary history and, currently, there is no definitive method for phylogenetic reconstruction using morphological data. Parsimony has been the primary method for analysing morphological data, but there has been a resurgence of interest in the likelihood-based Mk-model. Here, we test the performance of the Bayesian implementation of the Mk-model relative to both equal and implied-weight implementations of parsimony. Using simulated morphological data, we demonstrate that the Mk-model outperforms equal-weights parsimony in terms of topological accuracy, and implied-weights performs the most poorly. However, the Mk-model produces phylogenies that have less resolution than parsimony methods. This difference in the accuracy and precision of parsimony and Bayesian approaches to topology estimation needs to be considered when selecting a method for phylogeny reconstruction.

KEYWORDS:

Bayesian; likelihood; morphology; parsimony; phylogenetics

PMID:
27095266
PMCID:
PMC4881353
DOI:
10.1098/rsbl.2016.0081
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center