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Phylogenomics of Utricularia (sect. Utricularia: Lentibulariaceae): a possible tale of reticulation and conservation status of a carnivorous plant group


Carnivory in plants arose in different angiosperms lineages, with Lentibulariaceae as the largest family, represented by the genera Pinguicula, Genlisea and Utricularia. Brazil is considered a diversity center for the family and Colombia also stands out for the large number of species. However, there are few studies in Colombia and, therefore, the diversity of the family may be underestimated and the current status of the species is thus unknown. Genlisea and Utricularia have the highest rates of nucleotide substitutions within angiosperms, which can be related to the high respiration rate resulting from carnivory and, also as consequence, to the morphological diversification of species. In addition, in Utricularia, which comprises more than 240 species, there are modified leaves, the utricles, which allow the capture of prey and are adapted for the digestion and absorption of nutrients. The species of the section Utricularia are widely distributed around the world, being a controversial group from the taxonomic point of view. The inter-specific phylogenetic relationships are not consensual, with evidence that indicates past reticulation events and hybridization. To better understand this group of plants and their conservation status, it is important to know their diversity in Colombia and compare with the species that occur in Brazil and Europe. Thus, a reconstruction of evolutionary and biogeographic relationships for radiation from Utricularia lineages can be made, and also inferences about evolution in different environments and biomes. Therefore, from genomic data obtained by a robust and informative approach (Genotyping-by-Sequencing - GBS), morphological and geographic data, phylogenetic and phylogeographic hypotheses will proposed in order to infer the relationships between species and populations and their genetic diversity, which may contribute to conservation proposals. (AU)

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