Molecular phylogenetics of Micromeria (Lamiaceae) in the Canary Islands, diversification and inter-island colonization patterns inferred from nuclear genes

Mol Phylogenet Evol. 2015 Aug;89:160-70. doi: 10.1016/j.ympev.2015.04.017. Epub 2015 Apr 30.


Here we reconstruct the evolutionary history of Micromeria in the Canary Islands using eight nuclear markers. Our results show two centers of diversification for Micromeria, one in the eastern islands Gran Canaria and Lanzarote, the other in the western islands, Tenerife, La Palma and El Hierro. Suggested directions of inter-island colonization are the following: Gran Canaria to Lanzarote and La Gomera; Tenerife to La Palma (from the paleoisland of Teno), to El Hierro (from the younger, central part), and to La Gomera and Madeira (from the paleoislands). Colonization of La Gomera probably occurred several times from Gran Canaria and Tenerife. The taxonomic implications of these results are discussed. Incongruence among the different markers was evaluated and, using next generation sequencing, we investigated if this incongruence is due to gene duplication.

Keywords: Canary Islands; Diversification; Gene duplication; Island biogeography; Micromeria; Oceanic islands.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Nucleus / genetics*
  • Gene Duplication / genetics
  • Genetic Markers / genetics
  • Genetic Variation / genetics
  • High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing
  • Islands*
  • Lamiaceae / genetics*
  • Phylogeny*
  • Phylogeography
  • Portugal
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Spain


  • Genetic Markers