Key innovation or adaptive change? A test of leaf traits using Triodiinae in Australia

Toon, A., Crisp, M. D., Gamage, H., Mant, J., Morris, D. C., Schmidt, S. and Cook, L. G. (2015) Key innovation or adaptive change? A test of leaf traits using Triodiinae in Australia. Scientific Reports, 5 1-12. doi:10.1038/srep12398

Author Toon, A.
Crisp, M. D.
Gamage, H.
Mant, J.
Morris, D. C.
Schmidt, S.
Cook, L. G.
Title Key innovation or adaptive change? A test of leaf traits using Triodiinae in Australia
Journal name Scientific Reports   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 2045-2322
Publication date 2015-07-28
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1038/srep12398
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 5
Start page 1
End page 12
Total pages 12
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher Nature Publishing Group
Collection year 2016
Language eng
Formatted abstract
The evolution of novel traits (“key innovations”) allows some lineages to move into new environments or adapt to changing climates, whereas other lineages may track suitable habitat or go extinct. We test whether, and how, trait shifts are linked to environmental change using Triodiinae, C4 grasses that form the dominant understory over about 30% of Australia. Using phylogenetic and relaxed molecular clock estimates, we assess the Australian biogeographic origins of Triodiinae and reconstruct the evolution of stomatal and vascular bundle positioning. Triodiinae diversified from the mid-Miocene, coincident with the aridification of Australia. Subsequent niche shifts have been mostly from the Eremaean biome to the savannah, coincident with the expansion of the latter. Biome shifts are correlated with changes in leaf anatomy and radiations within Triodiinae are largely regional. Symplectrodia and Monodia are nested within Triodia. Rather than enabling biome shifts, convergent changes in leaf anatomy have probably occurred after taxa moved into the savannah biome—they are likely to have been subsequent adaptions rather than key innovations. Our study highlights the importance of testing the timing and origin of traits assumed to be phenotypic innovations that enabled ecological shifts.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 3 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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