Stochastic Character Mapping of State-Dependent Diversification Reveals the Tempo of Evolutionary Decline in Self-Compatible Onagraceae Lineages

Systematic Biology
William A Freyman, Sebastian Höhna


A major goal of evolutionary biology is to identify key evolutionary transitions that correspond with shifts in speciation and extinction rates. Stochastic character mapping has become the primary method used to infer the timing, nature, and number of character state transitions along the branches of a phylogeny. The method is widely employed for standard substitution models of character evolution. However, current approaches cannot be used for models that specifically test the association of character state transitions with shifts in diversification rates such as state-dependent speciation and extinction (SSE) models. Herein, we introduce a new stochastic character mapping algorithm that overcomes these limitations, and apply it to study mating system evolution over a time-calibrated phylogeny of the plant family Onagraceae. Utilizing a hidden state SSE model we tested the association of the loss of self-incompatibility (SI) with shifts in diversification rates. We found that self-compatible lineages have higher extinction rates and lower net-diversification rates compared with self-incompatible lineages. Furthermore, these results provide empirical evidence for the "senescing" diversification rates predicted in highly selfing...Continue Reading


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