Data from: Understanding the spectacular failure of DNA barcoding in willows (Salix): Does this result from a trans-specific selective sweep?
Percy, Diana M. et al. (2014), Data from: Understanding the spectacular failure of DNA barcoding in willows (Salix): Does this result from a trans-specific selective sweep?, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.qf6t5
Willows (Salix: Salicaceae) form a major ecological component of Holarctic floras, and consequently are an obvious target for a DNA-based identification system. We surveyed two to seven plastid genome regions (~3.8 kb; ~3% of the genome) from 71 Salix species across all five subgenera, to assess their performance as DNA barcode markers. Although Salix has a relatively high level of interspecific hybridization, this may not sufficiently explain the near complete failure of barcoding that we observed: only one species had a unique barcode. We recovered 39 unique haplotypes, from more than 500 specimens, that could be partitioned into six major haplotype groups. A unique variant of group I (haplotype 1*) was shared by 53 species in three of five Salix subgenera. This unusual pattern of haplotype sharing across infrageneric taxa is suggestive of either a massive non-random coalescence failure (incomplete lineage sorting), or of repeated plastid capture events, possibly including a historical selective sweep of haplotype 1* across taxonomic sections. The former is unlikely as molecular dating indicates that haplotype 1* originated recently, and is nested in the oldest major haplotype group in the genus. Further, we detected significant non-neutrality in the frequency spectrum of mutations in group I, but not outside group I, and demonstrated a striking absence of geographic structure to the haplotype distributions in this group. The most likely explanation for the patterns we observed involves recent repeated plastid capture events, aided by widespread hybridization and long-range seed dispersal, but primarily propelled by one or more trans-species selective sweeps.