Whole-genome processes interact with ecology and geography in shaping plant invasiveness: a global population-level study of the genus Phragmites

Name: Whole-genome processes interact with ecology and geography in shaping plant invasiveness: a global population-level study of the genus Phragmites
Researchers: Čuda Jan (member in research team)
Moravcová Lenka (member in research team)
Pergl Jan (member in research team)
Pyšek Petr (researcher)
Skálová Hana (member in research team)
Suda Jan (member in research team)
Šemberová Kristýna (member in research team)
Project Type: B - national grants (GA ČR, GA AVČR)
Realization from: 2014
Realization to: 2016
Summary: This project employs a novel framework to address multiple factors affecting plant invasiveness using the model grass species Phragmites australis. Using an extant collection of hundreds of populations from all over the globe, we will measure geographically structured variation in the cytological make-up (genome copy number and nuclear DNA amount) and in a common garden experiment the ecological traits (growth, reproduction, enemy attack, competitive ability) of the populations and assess how these interact to determine invasiveness. We hypothesise that cytological and ecological traits directly affect invasiveness and are co-shaped by their invasion potential over evolutionary history in the population’s geographic origin and by environmental variation in the introduced range. In addition, cytology and geography also affect invasiveness indirectly by influencing ecological traits. Disentangling these complex issues, backed-up by existing knowledge of populations’ genetic make-up will provide novel insights into mechanisms of invasion at the population level.

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