Australian Systematic Botany Australian Systematic Botany Society
Taxonomy, biogeography and evolution of plants

Molecular phylogeny of Acacia subgenus Phyllodineae (Mimosoideae : Leguminosae) based on DNA sequences of the internal transcribed spacer region

Daniel J. Murphy, Joseph T. Miller, Randall J. Bayer and Pauline Y. Ladiges

Australian Systematic Botany 16(1) 19 - 26
Published: 25 March 2003


The largest monophyletic group within Acacia is subgenus Phyllodineae, with more than 950 predominately Australian species, the majority characterised by adult foliage consisting of phyllodes. Molecular sequence data from the internal transcribed spacers (ITS) of the nuclear ribosomal DNA repeat were used to investigate the monophyly of seven sections within the subgenus. A nested PCR approach was used to amplify the ITS region. Fifty-one species representative of all sections were sequenced together with one outgroup taxon Lysiloma divaricata (Ingeae).

Phylogenetic parsimony analysis suggested that there are two main clades within Phyllodineae but that only one section, Lycopodiifoliae, is apparently monophyletic. In one of the main clades, Lycopodifoliae is related to some taxa in sections Alatae and Pulchellae and some members of section Phyllodineae. In the second main clade, sections Juliflorae, Plurinerves and Botrycephalae cluster with other members of section Phyllodineae. The two sections that are characterised by bipinnate foliage, Botrycephalae and Pulchellae, are nested within phyllodinous clades, indicating that at least two separate reversals to bipinnate leaves have occurred. Botrycephalae is paraphyletic with respect to taxa from section Phyllodineae that have single-nerved phyllodes and racemose inflorescences.

© CSIRO 2003

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