Phylogenetic endemism: a new approach for identifying geographical concentrations of evolutionary history

Mol Ecol. 2009 Oct;18(19):4061-72. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-294X.2009.04311.x. Epub 2009 Sep 15.


We present a new, broadly applicable measure of the spatial restriction of phylogenetic diversity, termed phylogenetic endemism (PE). PE combines the widely used phylogenetic diversity and weighted endemism measures to identify areas where substantial components of phylogenetic diversity are restricted. Such areas are likely to be of considerable importance for conservation. PE has a number of desirable properties not combined in previous approaches. It assesses endemism consistently, independent of taxonomic status or level, and independent of previously defined political or biological regions. The results can be directly compared between areas because they are based on equivalent spatial units. PE builds on previous phylogenetic analyses of endemism, but provides a more general solution for mapping endemism of lineages. We illustrate the broad applicability of PE using examples of Australian organisms having contrasting life histories: pea-flowered shrubs of the genus Daviesia (Fabaceae) and the Australian species of the Australo-Papuan tree frog radiation within the family Hylidae.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anura / genetics
  • Australia
  • Biodiversity*
  • Conservation of Natural Resources
  • Evolution, Molecular*
  • Fabaceae / genetics
  • Geography
  • Models, Genetic*
  • Phylogeny*