skip to main content

Title: Target-capture phylogenomics provide insights on gene and species tree discordances in Old World treefrogs (Anura: Rhacophoridae)
Genome-scale data have greatly facilitated the resolution of recalcitrant nodes that Sanger-based datasets have been unable to resolve. However, phylogenomic studies continue to use traditional methods such as bootstrapping to estimate branch support; and high bootstrap values are still interpreted as providing strong support for the correct topology. Furthermore, relatively little attention has been given to assessing discordances between gene and species trees, and the underlying processes that produce phylogenetic conflict. We generated novel genomic datasets to characterize and determine the causes of discordance in Old World treefrogs (Family: Rhacophoridae)—a group that is fraught with conflicting and poorly supported topologies among major clades. Additionally, a suite of data filtering strategies and analytical methods were applied to assess their impact on phylogenetic inference. We showed that incomplete lineage sorting was detected at all nodes that exhibited high levels of discordance. Those nodes were also associated with extremely short internal branches. We also clearly demonstrate that bootstrap values do not reflect uncertainty or confidence for the correct topology and, hence, should not be used as a measure of branch support in phylogenomic datasets. Overall, we showed that phylogenetic discordances in Old World treefrogs resulted from incomplete lineage sorting and that species tree more » inference can be improved using a multi-faceted, total-evidence approach, which uses the most amount of data and considers results from different analytical methods and datasets. « less
; ; ; ;
Award ID(s):
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Abstract

    A potential shortcoming of concatenation methods for species tree estimation is their failure to account for incomplete lineage sorting. Coalescent methods address this problem but make various assumptions that, if violated, can result in worse performance than concatenation. Given the challenges of analyzing DNA sequences with both concatenation and coalescent methods, retroelement insertions (RIs) have emerged as powerful phylogenomic markers for species tree estimation. Here, we show that two recently proposed quartet-based methods, SDPquartets and ASTRAL_BP, are statistically consistent estimators of the unrooted species tree topology under the coalescent when RIs follow a neutral infinite-sites model of mutation and the expected number of new RIs per generation is constant across the species tree. The accuracy of these (and other) methods for inferring species trees from RIs has yet to be assessed on simulated data sets, where the true species tree topology is known. Therefore, we evaluated eight methods given RIs simulated from four model species trees, all of which have short branches and at least three of which are in the anomaly zone. In our simulation study, ASTRAL_BP and SDPquartets always recovered the correct species tree topology when given a sufficiently large number of RIs, as predicted. A distance-basedmore »method (ASTRID_BP) and Dollo parsimony also performed well in recovering the species tree topology. In contrast, unordered, polymorphism, and Camin–Sokal parsimony (as well as an approach based on MDC) typically fail to recover the correct species tree topology in anomaly zone situations with more than four ingroup taxa. Of the methods studied, only ASTRAL_BP automatically estimates internal branch lengths (in coalescent units) and support values (i.e., local posterior probabilities). We examined the accuracy of branch length estimation, finding that estimated lengths were accurate for short branches but upwardly biased otherwise. This led us to derive the maximum likelihood (branch length) estimate for when RIs are given as input instead of binary gene trees; this corrected formula produced accurate estimates of branch lengths in our simulation study provided that a sufficiently large number of RIs were given as input. Lastly, we evaluated the impact of data quantity on species tree estimation by repeating the above experiments with input sizes varying from 100 to 100,000 parsimony-informative RIs. We found that, when given just 1000 parsimony-informative RIs as input, ASTRAL_BP successfully reconstructed major clades (i.e., clades separated by branches $>0.3$ coalescent units) with high support and identified rapid radiations (i.e., shorter connected branches), although not their precise branching order. The local posterior probability was effective for controlling false positive branches in these scenarios. [Coalescence; incomplete lineage sorting; Laurasiatheria; Palaeognathae; parsimony; polymorphism parsimony; retroelement insertions; species trees; transposon.]

    « less
  2. Kubatko, Laura (Ed.)
    Abstract Many recent phylogenetic methods have focused on accurately inferring species trees when there is gene tree discordance due to incomplete lineage sorting (ILS). For almost all of these methods, and for phylogenetic methods in general, the data for each locus are assumed to consist of orthologous, single-copy sequences. Loci that are present in more than a single copy in any of the studied genomes are excluded from the data. These steps greatly reduce the number of loci available for analysis. The question we seek to answer in this study is: what happens if one runs such species tree inference methods on data where paralogy is present, in addition to or without ILS being present? Through simulation studies and analyses of two large biological data sets, we show that running such methods on data with paralogs can still provide accurate results. We use multiple different methods, some of which are based directly on the multispecies coalescent model, and some of which have been proven to be statistically consistent under it. We also treat the paralogous loci in multiple ways: from explicitly denoting them as paralogs, to randomly selecting one copy per species. In all cases, the inferred species trees aremore »as accurate as equivalent analyses using single-copy orthologs. Our results have significant implications for the use of ILS-aware phylogenomic analyses, demonstrating that they do not have to be restricted to single-copy loci. This will greatly increase the amount of data that can be used for phylogenetic inference.[Gene duplication and loss; incomplete lineage sorting; multispecies coalescent; orthology; paralogy.]« less
  3. Background

    In the past three decades, several studies have predominantly relied on a small sample of the plastome to infer deep phylogenetic relationships in the species-rich Melastomataceae. Here, we report the first full plastid sequences of this family, compare general features of the sampled plastomes to other sequenced Myrtales, and survey the plastomes for highly informative regions for phylogenetics.


    Genome skimming was performed for 16 species spread across the Melastomataceae. Plastomes were assembled, annotated and compared to eight sequenced plastids in the Myrtales. Phylogenetic inference was performed using Maximum Likelihood on six different data sets, where putative biases were taken into account. Summary statistics were generated for all introns and intergenic spacers with suitable size for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification and used to rank the markers by phylogenetic information.


    The majority of the plastomes sampled are conserved in gene content and order, as well as in sequence length and GC content within plastid regions and sequence classes. Departures include the putative presence ofrps16andrpl2pseudogenes in some plastomes. Phylogenetic analyses of the majority of the schemes analyzed resulted in the same topology with high values of bootstrap support. Although there is still uncertainty in some relationships, in the highest supported topologies onlymore »two nodes received bootstrap values lower than 95%.


    Melastomataceae plastomes are no exception for the general patterns observed in the genomic structure of land plant chloroplasts, being highly conserved and structurally similar to most other Myrtales. Despite the fact that the full plastome phylogeny shares most of the clades with the previously widely used and reduced data set, some changes are still observed and bootstrap support is higher. The plastome data set presented here is a step towards phylogenomic analyses in the Melastomataceae and will be a useful resource for future studies.

    « less
  4. Next-generation sequencing technologies have facilitated new phylogenomic approaches to help clarify previously intractable relationships while simultaneously highlighting the pervasive nature of incongruence within and among genomes that can complicate definitive taxonomic conclusions. Salvia L., with ∼1,000 species, makes up nearly 15% of the species diversity in the mint family and has attracted great interest from biologists across subdisciplines. Despite the great progress that has been achieved in discerning the placement of Salvia within Lamiaceae and in clarifying its infrageneric relationships through plastid, nuclear ribosomal, and nuclear single-copy genes, the incomplete resolution has left open major questions regarding the phylogenetic relationships among and within the subgenera, as well as to what extent the infrageneric relationships differ across genomes. We expanded a previously published anchored hybrid enrichment dataset of 35 exemplars of Salvia to 179 terminals. We also reconstructed nearly complete plastomes for these samples from off-target reads. We used these data to examine the concordance and discordance among the nuclear loci and between the nuclear and plastid genomes in detail, elucidating both broad-scale and species-level relationships within Salvia . We found that despite the widespread gene tree discordance, nuclear phylogenies reconstructed using concatenated, coalescent, and network-based approaches recover a common backbonemore »topology. Moreover, all subgenera, except for Audibertia , are strongly supported as monophyletic in all analyses. The plastome genealogy is largely resolved and is congruent with the nuclear backbone. However, multiple analyses suggest that incomplete lineage sorting does not fully explain the gene tree discordance. Instead, horizontal gene flow has been important in both the deep and more recent history of Salvia . Our results provide a robust species tree of Salvia across phylogenetic scales and genomes. Future comparative analyses in the genus will need to account for the impacts of hybridization/introgression and incomplete lineage sorting in topology and divergence time estimation.« less
  5. Abstract

    To examine phylogenetic heterogeneity in turtle evolution, we collected thousands of high-confidence single-copy orthologs from 19 genome assemblies representative of extant turtle diversity and estimated a phylogeny with multispecies coalescent and concatenated partitioned methods. We also collected next-generation sequences from 26 turtle species and assembled millions of biallelic markers to reconstruct phylogenies based on annotated regions from the western painted turtle (Chrysemys picta bellii) genome (coding regions, introns, untranslated regions, intergenic, and others). We then measured gene tree-species tree discordance, as well as gene and site heterogeneity at each node in the inferred trees, and tested for temporal patterns in phylogenomic conflict across turtle evolution. We found strong and consistent support for all bifurcations in the inferred turtle species phylogenies. However, a number of genes, sites, and genomic features supported alternate relationships between turtle taxa. Our results suggest that gene tree-species tree discordance in these data sets is likely driven by population-level processes such as incomplete lineage sorting. We found very little effect of substitutional saturation on species tree topologies, and no clear phylogenetic patterns in codon usage bias and compositional heterogeneity. There was no correlation between gene and site concordance, node age, and DNA substitution rate across mostmore »annotated genomic regions. Our study demonstrates that heterogeneity is to be expected even in well-resolved clades such as turtles, and that future phylogenomic studies should aim to sample as much of the genome as possible in order to obtain accurate phylogenies for assessing conservation priorities in turtles. [Discordance; genomes; phylogeny; turtles.]

    « less