November 13th, 2019
By Gitzendanner, Matt
Although geographic isolation is a leading driver of speciation, the tempo and pattern of divergence at the genomic level remain unclear. We examine genome-wide divergence of putatively single-copy orthologous genes (POGs) in 20 allopatric species/variety pairs from diverse angiosperm clades, with 16 pairs reflecting the classic eastern Asia-eastern North America floristic disjunction. In each pair, >90% of POGs are under purifying selection, and <10% are under positive selection. A set of POGs are under strong positive selection, 14 of which are shared by 10–15 pairs, and one shared by all pairs; 15 POGs are annotated to biological processes responding to various stimuli. The relative abundance of POGs under different selective forces exhibits a repeated pattern among pairs despite an ~10 million-year difference in divergence time. Species divergence times are positively correlated with abundance of POGs under moderate purifying selection, but negatively correlated with abundance of POGs under strong purifying selection.
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