Relicts and radiations: Phylogenomics of an Australasian lizard clade with east Gondwanan origins (Gekkota: Diplodactyloidea)

Phillip L. Skipwith, Ke Bi, Paul M. Oliver

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16 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

Australasia harbors very high squamate diversity and is a center of endemicity for a number of major lineages. However, despite this diversity, the diplodactyloid geckos of Australia, New Caledonia, and New Zealand (comprised of three endemic families and >200 species) are the only extant squamates with unequivocal Mesozoic origins in the region. Diplodactyloid geckos also exhibit notable phenotypic and ecological diversity, most strikingly illustrated by the functionally limbless pygopods. Here, we present the first phylogenomic analyses of the pattern and timing of diplodactyloid evolution, based on a dataset of more than 4000 ultraconserved elements (UCEs) from 180 species. These analyses fully resolve nearly all nodes, including a number of intergeneric relationships that have proven problematic in previous studies. The hypothesis that New Caledonia and New Zealand clades represent independent post-KT boundary colonization events of Tasmantis from Australian ancestors is confirmed. Phylogenetic relationships recovered here further highlight contrasting patterns of diversity, most strikingly between insular and/or morphologically highly derived clades that have diversified rapidly, as opposed to other species poor and phylogenetically divergent relictual lineages on mainland Australia. Our new timetree suggests slightly older branching times than previous analyses and does not find a mass extinction event in the early Cenozoic. Finally, our new phylogeny highlights caudal variation across the clade. Most strikingly, the distinctive leaf-tail morphology shown by one family may in fact be plesiomorphic.

Original languageEnglish
Article number106589
JournalMolecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Volume140
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Jim McGuire, Raurie Bowie, Guin Wogan, Craig Moritz, and the entire McGuire/Bowie lab group for their invaluable feedback on this manuscript. Special thanks to Lydia Smith for her guidance in all aspects of data collection for high-throughput sequencing that made this this study possible. Carol Spencer proved critical in handling interinstitutional tissue loans while PLS was at the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology. Lastly, we would like to thank the reviewers for generously providing their time and for their helpful feedback. The Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, California Academy of Sciences, Western Australian Museum, Australian Museum, Queensland Museum, South Australian Museum, Museum of Victoria, Australia National University, Auckland Museum, and Te Papa Museum kindly provided the tissues which made this project possible. All labwork and data analysis was conducted at the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology. Grant funding awarded to PLS was graciously provided by the National Science Foundation ( DEB 1601806 ). PMO received funding to support this work from an Australian Research Council Linkage Grant , an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Fellowship, and a McKenzie Postdoctoral Fellowship from Melbourne University.

Funding Information:
We thank Jim McGuire, Raurie Bowie, Guin Wogan, Craig Moritz, and the entire McGuire/Bowie lab group for their invaluable feedback on this manuscript. Special thanks to Lydia Smith for her guidance in all aspects of data collection for high-throughput sequencing that made this this study possible. Carol Spencer proved critical in handling interinstitutional tissue loans while PLS was at the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology. Lastly, we would like to thank the reviewers for generously providing their time and for their helpful feedback. The Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, California Academy of Sciences, Western Australian Museum, Australian Museum, Queensland Museum, South Australian Museum, Museum of Victoria, Australia National University, Auckland Museum, and Te Papa Museum kindly provided the tissues which made this project possible. All labwork and data analysis was conducted at the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology. Grant funding awarded to PLS was graciously provided by the National Science Foundation (DEB 1601806). PMO received funding to support this work from an Australian Research Council Linkage Grant, an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Fellowship, and a McKenzie Postdoctoral Fellowship from Melbourne University.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Elsevier Inc.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

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