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Citation for Study 10284

About Citation title: "Biogeography of Cedrela (Meliaceae, Sapindales) in Central and South America.".
About This study was previously identified under the legacy study ID S2644 (Status: Published).


Muellner A., Pennington T., Koecke A., & Renner S.S. 2010. Biogeography of Cedrela (Meliaceae, Sapindales) in Central and South America. American Journal of Botany, 97(3): 511-518.


  • Muellner A.
  • Pennington T.
  • Koecke A.
  • Renner S.S. Phone 011-49-(0)89-17861250


Dated phylogenies have helped clarify the complex history of many plant families that today are restricted to the world’s tropical forests, but that have Eocene, Oligocene, and Miocene fossils from the northern hemisphere. One such family is the Meliaceae. Here we infer the history of the neotropical Meliaceae genus Cedrela (17 species), the sister clade of which today is restricted to tropical Asia. Sequences from the nuclear ribosomal spacer region and five plastid loci obtained for all ingroup species and relevant outgroups were used to infer species relationships and for molecular-clock dating under two Bayesian relaxed clock models. The clock models differed in their handling of rate autocorrelation and sets of fossil constraints. Results suggest that (1) crown group diversification in Cedrela started in the Oligocene/Early Miocene and intensified in the Late Miocene and Early Pliocene, and (2) Central American Cedrela species do not form a clade, implying reentry into Central America after the closure of the Panamanian Isthmus. At present, Cedrela is distributed in both dry and humid habitats, but morphological features suggest an origin in dry forest under seasonal climates, fitting with Miocene and Pliocene Cedrela fossils from deciduous forests.


Cedrela, internal transcribed spacer (ITS), Meliaceae, molecular clocks, psbB exon, psbN exon, psbT exon, rpoC1, Sapindales, trnS-trnG intergenic spacer

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