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Abstract Detail


Systematics Section / ASPT

Baum, David A. [1].

Primary concordance trees as the basis for taxonomy.

One of the main roles of taxonomy is to provide a general coordinate system for biological diversity such. One should be able to relatively unambiguously communicate where an organism sits on the tree of life by reference to the taxa of which it is a member. It has been understood since Hennig, that to play such a role, an organismís taxonomic placement needs to be based on its evolutionary relatedness, understood to entail recency of common ancestry. However, the concept of relatedness has been complicated by the discovery that genomes contain a multitude of potentially discordant histories, such that relationships vary depending on the gene considered. How in such a case can one maintain a strictly hierarchical taxonomic system?
I propose that the natural basis for taxonomy in the face of discordant histories is the primary concordance tree (PCT), a tree composed only of clades that are true for a plurality of the genome. Bayesian Concordance analysis is a recently developed method that allows one to directly estimate the PCT tree from multilocus sequence data and to estimate statistical confidence for each component clade. However, we can also learn about concordance from more conventional phylogenetic methods. A PCT is always divergent, even in the face of incomplete lineage sorting, introgression, lateral gene transfer and other source of genealogical discordance. Furthermore, while it may not always be easy to estimate PCTs with precision, for any set of extant organisms there is reason to assume the existence of one true PCT and, consequently, there is one correct assignment of organisms to taxa. Thus, adoption of this perspective allows taxonomy to provide a general coordinate system for biological diversity and may facilitate better integration of taxonomy into the information age.


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1 - University of Wisconsin Madison, Department of Botany, Birge Hall, 430 Lincoln Drive, Madison, Wisconsin, 53706-1381, USA

Keywords:
phylogenetic nomenclature
phylogenetic analysis
genealogical discordance
Bayesian Concordance Analysis.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: CP24
Location: Continental C/Hilton
Date: Tuesday, July 10th, 2007
Time: 10:15 AM
Number: CP24008
Abstract ID:1721


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