Skip to main content
Dryad logo

Data from: Population genomics and geographical parthenogenesis in Japanese harvestmen (Opiliones, Sclerosomatidae, Leiobunum)


Burns, Mercedes; Hedin, Marshal; Tsurusaki, Nobuo (2018), Data from: Population genomics and geographical parthenogenesis in Japanese harvestmen (Opiliones, Sclerosomatidae, Leiobunum), Dryad, Dataset,


Naturally-occurring population variation in reproductive mode presents an opportunity for researchers to test hypotheses regarding the evolution of sex. Such populations frequently assume a geographical pattern, in which parthenogenesis-dominated populations are widely dispersed, with narrowly distributed sexual populations. We evaluate the geographic distribution of genomic signatures associated with parthenogenesis using nuclear and mitochondrial DNA sequence data from two Japanese harvestman sister taxa, Leiobunum manubriatum and L. globosum. Asexual reproduction is putatively facultative in these species, and female-biased localities are common in habitat margins. Past karyotypic and current cytometric work indicates L. globosum is entirely tetraploid, while L. manubriatum may be either diploid or tetraploid. We estimated species phylogeny, genetic differentiation, diversity, and mitonuclear discordance in females collected across the species range in order to identify range expansion towards marginal habitat, potential for hybrid origin, and persistence of asexual lineages. Our results point to northward expansion of a tetraploid ancestor of L. manubriatum and L. globosum, coupled with support for greater male gene flow in southern L. manubriatum localities. Specimens from localities in the Tohoku and Hokkaido regions were indistinct, particularly those of L. globosum, potentially due to little mitochondrial differentiation or haplotypic variation. Although L. manubriatum overlaps with L. globosum across its entire range, L. globosum was reconstructed as monophyletic with strong support using mtDNA, and marginal support with nuclear loci. Ultimately, we find evidence for continued sexual reproduction in both species, and describe opportunities to clarify the rate and mechanism of parthenogenesis.

Usage Notes


National Science Foundation, Award: DBI-1401110