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The role of habitat selection in the maintenance of species integrity in natural hybrid zones

Grant number: 16/22785-8
Support type:BIOTA-FAPESP Program - Regular Research Grants
Duration: April 01, 2017 - March 31, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Botany
Principal researcher:Fábio Pinheiro
Grantee:Fábio Pinheiro
Home Institution: Instituto de Biologia (IB). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil


Studies on natural hybrid zones are essential for understanding the process of speciation. The gradual accumulation of reproductive incompatibilities tends to intensify the differences between closely related lineages, and multiple barriers can act in concert keeping the integrity of close related species. There are cases where the cohesion of species is maintained even in the presence of gene exchange, and how the permeability of reproductive barriers affect the integrity of species in hybrid zones is a topic rarely explored in tropical regions. In this context, multidisciplinary approaches are essential to the understanding of the origin and maintenance of multiple reproductive isolation barriers. The objective of this project is to explore how habitat selection contribute to the maintenance of integrity between two species that form extensive hybridization zones in sand dune vegetation, Epidendrum fulgens and E. puniceoluteum. Deterministic mechanisms driven by selection for different habitats will be explored using multiple approaches. In addition, interspecific gene exchange will be tested by analyzing sympatric and allopatric populations. Samples from the hybrid zone located at Ilha do Cardoso - SP, and allopatric populations from Bertioga - SP (E. fulgens) and Paranaguá - PR (E. puniceoluteum) will be analysed. Next generation sequencing techniques will be used to explore the genetic background of parental species and hybrids. The intensity of genetic admixture of the parental species, the introgression levels of different genomes and the differential gene expression between species and hybrids will be explored using transcriptome analysis, which may indicate divergent selection on genes related to different habitats. The ploidy levels of the individuals involved in all analyzes will be measured by flow cytometry. This information is critical to a better understanding of the evolution of reproductive isolation in hybrid zones of plants in the Neotropics, as well as the evolutionary processes that shaped the high levels of biodiversity observed in the region. (AU)

Articles published in Pesquisa FAPESP Magazine about the research grant:
Similitudes engañosas entre especies 
Misleading similarities between species 
Articles published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the research grant:
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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
ALVES, MARIANA FERREIRA; PINHEIRO, FABIO; PEREIRA NUNES, CARLOS EDUARDO; PROSDOCIMI, FRANCISCO; SARZI, DEISE SCHRODER; FURTADO, CAROLINA; SAMPAIO MAYER, JULIANA LISCHKA. Reproductive development and genetic structure of the mycoheterotrophic orchid Pogoniopsis schenckii Cogn.. BMC PLANT BIOLOGY, v. 21, n. 1, . (16/22785-8, 15/26479-6)
SANTOS LEAL, BARBARA SIMOES; BRANDAO, MARCELO MENDES; PALMA-SILVA, CLARISSE; PINHEIRO, FABIO. Differential gene expression reveals mechanisms related to habitat divergence between hybridizing orchids from the Neotropical coastal plains. BMC PLANT BIOLOGY, v. 20, n. 1, . (18/18967-9, 16/22785-8)
PINHEIRO, FABIO; DANTAS-QUEIROZ, MARCOS VINICIUS; PALMA-SILVA, CLARISSE. Plant Species Complexes as Models to Understand Speciation and Evolution: A Review of South American Studies. CRITICAL REVIEWS IN PLANT SCIENCES, v. 37, n. 1, p. 54-80, . (16/22785-8, 14/15588-6)

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