DOI: 10.1101/462440Nov 6, 2018Paper

The grass subfamily Pooideae: late Cretaceous origin and climate-driven Cenozoic diversification

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Marian SchubertSiri Fjellheim


Aim: Frost is among the most dramatic stresses a plant can experience and complex physiological adaptations are needed to endure long periods of sub-zero temperatures. Due to the need for evolving these complex adaptations, transitioning from tropical to temperate climates is regarded difficult and only half of the world's seed plant families have temperate representatives. Here, we study the transition from tropical to temperate climates in the grass subfamily Pooideae, which dominates the northern temperate grass floras. Specifically, we investigate the role of climate cooling in diversification. Location: Global, temperate regions Time period: Late Cretaceous-Cenozoic Major taxa: The grass subfamily Pooideae Methods: We date a comprehensive Pooideae phylogeny and test for the impact of paleoclimates on diversification rates. Using ancestral state reconstruction, we investigate if Pooideae ancestors experienced frost and winter. To locate the area of origin of Pooideae we perform biogeographical analyses. Results: We estimated a late Cretaceous origin of the Pooideae (66 million years ago (Mya)), and all major clades had already diversified at the Eocene-Oligocene transition climate cooling (34 Mya). Climate cooling was a pro...Continue Reading

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