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ESPOSITO, F., VEREECKEN, N.J., GAMMELLA,..., 2018, Characterization of sympatric Platanther...

Type de document :Article
Auteur(s) et année :ESPOSITO, F., VEREECKEN, N.J., GAMMELLA, M., RINALDI, R., LAURENT, P. et TYTECA, D. (2018)
Titre :Characterization of sympatric Platanthera bifolia and Platanthera chlorantha populations with intermediate plants
Références :PeerJ 6:e4256; DOI 10.7717/peerj.4256, pp. 1-34.
Résumé :

Platanthera bifolia and P. chlorantha are terrestrial and rewarding orchids with a wide Eurasian distribution. Although genetically closely related, they exhibit significant morphological, phenological and ecological differences that maintain reproductive isolation between the species. However, where both species co-occur, individuals with intermediate phenotypic traits, often considered as hybrids, are frequently observed. Here, we combined neutral genetic markers (AFLPs), morphometrics and floral scent analysis (GC-MS) to investigate two mixed Platanthera populations where morphologically intermediate plants were found. Self-pollination experiments revealed a low level of autogamy and artificial crossings combined with assessments of fruit set and seed viability, showed compatibility between the two species. The results of the genetic analyses showed that morphologically intermediate plants had similar genetic patterns as the P. bifolia group. These results are corroborated also by floral scent analyses, which confirmed a strong similarity in floral scent composition between intermediate morphotypes and P. bifolia. Therefore, this study provided a much more detailed picture of the genetic structure of a sympatric zone between two closely allied species and supports the hypothesis that intermediate morphotypes in sympatry could reflect an adaptive evolution in response to local pollinator-mediated selection.

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