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Adaptive Radiation in the Hawaiian Silversword Alliance (Compositae- Madiinae). II. Cytogenetics of Artificial and Natural Hybrids

Gerald D. Carr and Donald W. Kyhos
Evolution
Vol. 40, No. 5 (Sep., 1986), pp. 959-976
DOI: 10.2307/2408756
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2408756
Page Count: 18
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Adaptive Radiation in the Hawaiian Silversword Alliance (Compositae- Madiinae). II. Cytogenetics of Artificial and Natural Hybrids
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Abstract

The Hawaiian silversword alliance of Argyroxiphium, Dubautia, and Wilkesia, in spite of exhibiting spectacular morphological, ecological, physiological, and chromosomal diversity, is remarkably cohesive, genetically. This is attested to by the ease of production of artificial hybrids and by the high frequency of spontaneous hybridization among such life forms as mat-forming subshrub, monocarpic rosette shrub, polycarpic shrub, cushion plant, tree, and vine. Even the least fertile of these hybrids is capable of producing backcross progeny. Moreover, first generation interspecific and intergeneric hybrids have been successfully used to produce trispecific hybrids in a number of instances. In general, the widest hybrid combinations have been as readily produced as crosses within a species. At present eight genomes or chromosome races distinguished by reciprocal translocations are recognized on the basis of meiotic analysis of artificial and spontaneous hybrids. Seven of these races are found among those species with 14 pairs of chromosomes. The eighth genome very likely characterizes all nine species of this alliance that have 13 pairs of chromosomes. The cytogenetic data indicate that redundancy of translocations involving the same chromosomes has been a recurrent theme in the chromosomal differentiation of these taxa. There appears to be little, if any, correlation between chromosomal evolution and adaptive radiation as assessed by gross habital differentiation in this group. However, within Dubautia, a novel ecophysiological trait associated with colonization of xeric habitats is restricted to species with n = 13. In contrast to the bulk of the Hawaiian flora, which is characterized by self-compatibility and chromosomal stability, it is suggested that the occurrence of self-incompatibility in the Hawaiian Madiinae may have favored selection of supergenes via chromosomal repatterning, and this may account for the diversity of chromosome structure seen in this group.

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