Neutral biodiversity theory can explain the imbalance of phylogenetic trees but not the tempo of their diversification

Davies, T. Jonathan; Allen, Andrew P.; Borda-de-Água, Luís; Regetz, Jim; Melian Penate, Carlos Javier (2011). Neutral biodiversity theory can explain the imbalance of phylogenetic trees but not the tempo of their diversification. Evolution, 65(7), pp. 1841-1850. Wiley 10.1111/j.1558-5646.2011.01265.x

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Numerous evolutionary studies have sought to explain the distribution of diversity across the limbs of the tree of life. At the same time, ecological studies have sought to explain differences in diversity and relative abundance within and among ecological communities. Traditionally, these patterns have been considered separately, but models that consider processes operating at the level of individuals, such as neutral biodiversity theory (NBT), can provide a link between them. Here, we compare evolutionary dynamics across a suite of NBT models. We show that NBT can yield phylogenetic tree topologies with imbalance closely resembling empirical observations. In general, metacommunities that exhibit greater disparity in abundance are characterized by more imbalanced phylogenetic trees. However, NBT fails to capture the tempo of diversification as represented by the distribution of branching events through time. We suggest that population-level processes might therefore help explain the asymmetry of phylogenetic trees, but that tree shape might mislead estimates of evolutionary rates unless the diversification process is modeled explicitly.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Ecology and Evolution (IEE)
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Ecology and Evolution (IEE) > Aquatic Ecology

UniBE Contributor:

Melian Penate, Carlos Javier

Subjects:

500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology

ISSN:

0014-3820

Publisher:

Wiley

Language:

English

Submitter:

Marcel Häsler

Date Deposited:

05 Sep 2014 15:57

Last Modified:

08 Jan 2015 19:01

Publisher DOI:

10.1111/j.1558-5646.2011.01265.x

Uncontrolled Keywords:

Colless’ imbalance, diversity, fission, migration, point mutation, speciation

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.49034

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/49034

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