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Data from: Arabidopsis hybrid speciation processes

Cite this dataset

Schmickl, Roswitha; Koch, Marcus A. (2011). Data from: Arabidopsis hybrid speciation processes [Dataset]. Dryad.


The genus Arabidopsis provides a unique opportunity to study fundamental biological questions in plant sciences utilizing the diploid model species A. thaliana and A. lyrata. However, only a few studies have focused on introgression and hybrid speciation in Arabidopsis, although polyploidy is a common phenomenon within this genus. More recently, there is growing evidence of significant gene flow between the various Arabidopsis species. So far, we know A. suecica and A. kamchatica as fully stabilized allopolyploid species. Both species evolved during Pleistocene glaciation and deglaciation cycles in Fennoscandinavia and the amphi-Beringian region, respectively. These hybrid studies were conducted either on a phylogeographic scale, or hybridization was reconstructed experimentally in the laboratory. With our study we focus at a regional and populational level. Our research area is located in the foothills of the Eastern Austrian Alps, where two Arabidopsis species, A. arenosa and A. lyrata ssp. petraea, are sympatrically distributed. Our hypothesis of genetic introgression, migration, and adaptation to the changing environment during the Pleistocene has been confirmed: We observed significant, mainly unidirectional gene flow between the two species, which has given rise to the tetraploid A. lyrata. This cytotype was able to escape from the narrow ecological niche occupied by diploid A. lyrata ssp. petraea on limestone outcrops by migrating northward into siliceous areas, leaving behind a trail of genetic differentiation.

Usage notes


Eastern Austrian Forealps
Western Carpathians