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Emerson B.C.,CSIC - Institute of Natural Products and Agrobiology | Faria C.M.A.,University of East Anglia
Molecular Ecology | Year: 2014

A well-used metaphor for oceanic islands is that they act as 'natural laboratories' for the study of evolution. But how can islands or archipelagos be considered analogues of laboratories for understanding the evolutionary process itself? It is not necessarily the case that just because two or more related species occur on an island or archipelago, somehow, this can help us understand more about their evolutionary history. But in some cases, it can. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Garrick et al. (2014) use population-level sampling within closely related taxa of Galapagos giant tortoises to reveal a complex demographic history of the species Chelonoidis becki - a species endemic to Isabela Island, and geographically restricted to Wolf Volcano. Using microsatellite genotyping and mitochondrial DNA sequencing, they provide a strong case for C. becki being derived from C. darwini from the neighbouring island of Santiago. But the interest here is that colonization did not happen only once. Garrick et al. (2014) reveal C. becki to be the product of a double colonization event, and their data reveal these two founding lineages to be now fusing back into one. Their results are compelling and add to a limited literature describing the evolutionary consequences of double colonization events. Here, we look at the broader implications of the findings of Garrick et al. (2014) and suggest genomic admixture among multiple founding populations may be a characteristic feature within insular taxa. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

Fraga B.M.,CSIC - Institute of Natural Products and Agrobiology
Natural Product Reports | Year: 2013

Covering: 2012. Previous review: Nat. Prod. Rep. 2012, 29, 1334. This review covers the isolation, structural determination, synthesis and chemical and microbiological transformations of natural sesquiterpenoids. The literature from January to December 2012 is reviewed, and 471 references are cited. © 2013 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Fraga B.M.,CSIC - Institute of Natural Products and Agrobiology
Phytochemistry | Year: 2012

The phytochemical content of the Mediterranean species of the Sideritis genus has been reviewed. The components included in this review are monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes, diterpenes, triterpenes, sterols, flavones, coumarins and phenylpropanoids. From the chemotaxonomic point of view, we have divided the species from this region into four groups. The first of this is formed by taxa containing triterpenes, but not diterpenes. A second group is constituted by species having bicyclic diterpenes of the labdane type and not diterpenes. The third group is characterized by its content in tetracyclic diterpenes of the ent-kaurene type. A fourth group is composed of plants with tetracyclic diterpenes of the ent-beyer-15-ene and/or ent-atis-13-ene class. In addition, the relations of these Mediterranean species with those of the Macaronesian region have been examined. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Tzedakis P.C.,University College London | Emerson B.C.,CSIC - Institute of Natural Products and Agrobiology | Emerson B.C.,University of East Anglia | Hewitt G.M.,University of East Anglia
Trends in Ecology and Evolution | Year: 2013

Here, we examine the evidence for tree refugia in northern Europe during the Late Pleniglacial (LPG) interval of maximum tree-range contraction. Our review highlights the often equivocal nature of genetic data and a tendency to overestimate potential tree distributions due to warm climate-model bias, and also reveals a convergence of macrofossil and pollen evidence. What emerges is the absence of temperate trees north of 45°N and a west-east (W-E) asymmetry in boreal tree distribution, with a treeless Western Europe north of 46°N, while restricted boreal populations persisted in Eastern Europe up to 49°N, and higher latitudes east of the Fennoscandian ice-sheet. These results have implications for current thinking on European genetic diversity patterns, species migration capacity, and conservation strategies. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Hernandez D.,CSIC - Institute of Natural Products and Agrobiology | Boto A.,CSIC - Institute of Natural Products and Agrobiology
European Journal of Organic Chemistry | Year: 2014

The azanucleosides are nucleoside analogues where the furanose ring is replaced by a nitrogen-containing ring or chain. Many azanucleosides are potent antiviral, anticancer and antimicrobial agents, or serve as valuable components of oligonucleotides with improved stability, binding or hybridization properties. Therefore, the development of new analogues is a very active area in medicinal and synthetic chemistry. Their synthesis and their interesting biological properties are discussed in this microreview. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

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