Oral Presentation Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution Conference 2016

Adaptive and neutral genomic diversity of the global invader Ambrosia artemisiifolia (#118)

Lotte A van Boheemen 1 , Kristin Nurkowski 1 , Loren H Rieseberg 2 , Kathryn A Hodgins 1
  1. School of Biological Sciences, Monash University, Clayton, Vic, Australia
  2. Department of Botany, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada

 To elucidate aspects of the genomic basis of rapid local adaptation, we have examined neutral and adaptive genetic variation of the widespread Ambrosia artemisiifolia along parallel environmental clines. Additionally, our goal is to enhance knowledge on the invasion history of this highly invasive weed, native to North America and recently introduced to many places worldwide, including Europe and Australia. Besides re-establishment along latitudinal clines we have found this species occurring outside of its native niche, making it an excellent study species to gain insight into local adaptation. Together with the use of molecular, genetic and advanced statistical tools we are able to reconstruct invasion history and population genetic structure at high resolution. This is feasible because of thorough sampling in native and two of the introduced ranges. Furthermore, we will associate genotypes to climatic data to shed light on recent adaptive change and identify divergent and parallel patterns at the genetic level. Comparison of adaptive and neutral genomic diversity between the native and introduced ranges will enhance our understanding of the mechanism at play during contemporary evolution.