Himalayan uplift shaped biomes in Miocene temperate Asia: evidence from leguminous CaraganaAuthor(s): Ming-Li Zhang; Xiao-Guo Xiang; Juan-Juan Xue; Stewart C. Sanderson; Peter W. Fritsch
Source: Scientific Reports. 6: 36528.
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Rocky Mountain Research Station
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Caragana, with distinctive variation in leaf and rachis characters, exhibits three centers of geographic distribution, i.e., Central Asia, the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP), and East Asia, corresponding to distinct biomes. Because Caragana species are often ecologically dominant components of the vegetation in these regions, it is regarded as a key taxon for the study of floristic evolution in the dry regions of temperate Asia. Based on an expanded data set of taxa and gene regions from those previously generated, we employed molecular clock and biogeographical analyses to infer the evolutionary history of Caragana and link it to floristic patterns, paleovegetation, and paleoclimate. Results indicate that Caragana is of arid origin from the Junggar steppe. Diversification of crown group Caragana, dated to the early Miocene ca. 18 Ma and onwards, can be linked to the Himalayan Motion stage of QTP uplift. Diversification of the major clades in the genus corresponding to taxonomic sections and morphological variation is inferred to have been driven by the uplift, as well as Asian interior aridification and East Asian monsoon formation, in the middle to late Miocene ca. 12~6 Ma. These findings demonstrate a synchronous evolution among floristics, vegetation and climate change in arid Central Asia, cold arid alpine QTP, and mesophytic East Asia.
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CitationZhang, Ming-Li; Xiang, Xiao-Guo; Xue, Juan-Juan; Sanderson, Stewart C.; Fritsch, Peter W. 2016. Himalayan uplift shaped biomes in Miocene temperate Asia: evidence from leguminous Caragana. Scientific Reports. 6: 36528.
KeywordsCaragana, synchronous evolution, floristics, vegetation, climate change
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