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Ng W.L.,Kyushu University | Ng W.L.,University Putra Malaysia | Onishi Y.,Kyushu University | Onishi Y.,Osaka University | And 8 more authors.
Conservation Genetics | Year: 2014

Members of the mangrove genus Rhizophora represent the most commonly occurring and highly valued species in the Indo-West Pacific region. However, to date, few studies have been directed towards the understanding of their genetic variation. The levels and patterns of genetic variation at chloroplast and nuclear gene regions were studied in R. apiculata, R. mucronata, and R. stylosa sampled from Southeast Asia and Japan. All three species were characterized by low intraspecific genetic variation and a deficiency of heterozygotes in populations within the region, consistent with findings in studies on other mangrove species. Rhizophora mucronata and R. stylosa were also found to be more closely related than any of them with R. apiculata. During the Last Glacial Maximum, sea levels dropped to 120 m below the current levels, exposing part of the Sunda Shelf that became a barrier that limited gene flow between marine species living in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Today, the Malay Peninsula is thought to still serve as a barrier to gene flow between populations occurring on its coasts. The pattern of genetic differentiation of R. apiculata supports the hypothesis of the land barrier effect of the Malay Peninsula, but such patterns were not found in R. mucronata and R. stylosa. Our findings suggest that R. apiculata, R. mucronata, and R. stylosa have different demographic histories despite being closely related and having sympatric distributions today. Furthermore, all three species appear to have high levels of inbreeding due to limited pollen and propagule dispersal, and that both these factors contributed to population differentiation. © 2014 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.


Ng W.L.,Kyushu University | Ng W.L.,University Putra Malaysia | Onishi Y.,Kyushu University | Onishi Y.,Osaka University | And 8 more authors.
Conservation Genetics | Year: 2014

Members of the mangrove genus Rhizophora represent the most commonly occurring and highly valued species in the Indo-West Pacific region. However, to date, few studies have been directed towards the understanding of their genetic variation. The levels and patterns of genetic variation at chloroplast and nuclear gene regions were studied in R. apiculata, R. mucronata, and R. stylosa sampled from Southeast Asia and Japan. All three species were characterized by low intraspecific genetic variation and a deficiency of heterozygotes in populations within the region, consistent with findings in studies on other mangrove species. Rhizophora mucronata and R. stylosa were also found to be more closely related than any of them with R. apiculata. During the Last Glacial Maximum, sea levels dropped to 120 m below the current levels, exposing part of the Sunda Shelf that became a barrier that limited gene flow between marine species living in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Today, the Malay Peninsula is thought to still serve as a barrier to gene flow between populations occurring on its coasts. The pattern of genetic differentiation of R. apiculata supports the hypothesis of the land barrier effect of the Malay Peninsula, but such patterns were not found in R. mucronata and R. stylosa. Our findings suggest that R. apiculata, R. mucronata, and R. stylosa have different demographic histories despite being closely related and having sympatric distributions today. Furthermore, all three species appear to have high levels of inbreeding due to limited pollen and propagule dispersal, and that both these factors contributed to population differentiation. © 2014, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.


Ng W.L.,Kyushu University | Chan H.T.,International Society for Mangrove Ecosystems ISME | Szmidt A.E.,Kyushu University
Tree Genetics and Genomes | Year: 2013

Natural hybridization is common in plants. Very often, the identity of a putative hybrid is inferred based on the observation of morphological features intermediate between two possible parental species occurring in a specific location. However, due to plasticity of morphological features and the co-occurrence of more than two possible parental species, molecular markers would be most useful to establish the origin of a putative hybrid. In mangroves, three Rhizophora species (Rhizophora apiculata, Rhizophora mucronata, and Rhizophora stylosa) and two putative hybrids (Rhizophora × lamarckii and Rhizophora × annamalayana) are distributed in the Indo-West Pacific region. Leaf samples of Rhizophora were obtained from two locations in Peninsular Malaysia, namely, Bagan Lalang and Pulau Burung, where all three species grow in sympatry. We analyzed sequences of one chloroplast and six nuclear DNA regions. Our results confirmed earlier claims that the morphologically identified putative hybrids growing in Pulau Burung are R. × lamarckii, a cross between R. apiculata and R. stylosa. Our data also pointed to the possible discovery of a new Rhizophora hybrid-a cross between R. mucronata and R. stylosa-the identification of which would have been difficult based on morphological features alone. The directions and the stages of hybridization are also discussed. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

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