Genetic consequences of subtropical rainforest fragmentation on Macadamia tetraphylla (Proteaceae)

Spain, C. S. and Lowe, A. J. (2011) Genetic consequences of subtropical rainforest fragmentation on Macadamia tetraphylla (Proteaceae). Silvae Genetica, 60 6: 241-249.

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Author Spain, C. S.
Lowe, A. J.
Title Genetic consequences of subtropical rainforest fragmentation on Macadamia tetraphylla (Proteaceae)
Journal name Silvae Genetica   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0037-5349
Publication date 2011
Sub-type Article (original research)
Volume 60
Issue 6
Start page 241
End page 249
Total pages 9
Place of publication Frankfurt Am Main, Germany
Publisher J.D. Sauerlaender's Verlag
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Abstract Habitat fragmentation can bring about a variety of gene-flow alterations in plant populations, potentially threatening adaptive potential and local persistence. It is expected that following habitat fragmentation an increased level of inbreeding will be evident. In addition, a reduction in genetic diversity and increased genetic differentiation is expected following severe or long term population bottlenecks. We examined population genetic parameters for the subtropical rainforest tree Macadamia tetraphylla (Proteaceae) at six field sites throughout its recently fragmented range, using four microsatellite loci. Genetic diversity (HE) of the juvenile cohort was significantly correlated with estimated population size. No significant difference was observed for genetic diversity between adult and juvenile cohorts, but juveniles, and not adults, exhibited significant population differentiation (θ =0.061; P<0.0001 and θ =0.016; P=0.23, respectively). A second, standardised measure of differentiation, θ, yielded similarly large differences between the two cohorts, though higher estimates of differentiation overall (adults – θ=0.034, juveniles – θ=0.116). The coefficient of population inbreeding (f ) was significant and positive in all juvenile, and four out of six adult, populations, and was significantly positively correlated with adult tree density, but not adult population size. Since fragmentation is relatively recent for this species, the population bottleneck must have been quite severe to have produced the observed patterns of population differentiation and genetic diversity. Fragmentation of forest across the study area over the last 100+ years has led to the genetic isolation of M. tetraphylla populations resulting in increased population divergence and likely eventual loss of genetic variation in future generations.
Keyword Macadamia tetraphylla
Subtropical rainforest
Gene diversity
Inbreeding coefficient
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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