skip to main content

Title: Investigating the Genomic Distribution of Phylogenetic Signal with CloudForest
A central focus of evolutionary biology is inferring the historical relationships among species and using this context to learn about how evolution has shaped diverse organisms. These historical relationships are represented by phylogenetic trees, and the methods used to infer these trees have been an active area of research for several decades. Despite this attention, phylogenetic workflows have changed little, even though extraordinary advances have occurred in the scale and pace at which genomic data have been collected in the past 20 years. Modern phylogenomic datasets have also raised fascinating new questions. Why do different parts of a genome often support different relationships among species? How are these different signals distributed across chromosomes? We developed a new computational framework, CloudForest, to tackle such questions. CloudForest is flexible, efficient, and tightly integrates a diverse set of tools. Here, we briefly describe the architecture of CloudForest, including the advantages it provides, and use it to investigate the distribution of phylogenetic signal along the entire X chromosome of 24 cat (Felidae) species.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1934182 1934156
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Proceedings of the Practice and Experience on Advanced Research Computing
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. It is now well established that the end-Cretaceous mass extinction had enormous repercussions for mammalian evolution. Following the extinction, during the Paleocene, mammals started to radiate, occupying new and diverse ecological niches. However, the phylogenetic relationships between the socalled “archaic” mammals of this time, and their position within Placentalia, remain contentious. The Periptychidae are a clade of distinctive “archaic” ungulates, composed of ~17 genera of small to large bodied, highly bunodont, terrestrial herbivores that were among the first placental mammals to appear after the end-Cretaceous mass extinction. Although the Periptychidae has been historically considered a distinctive “condylarth” subgroup, their higherlevel relationships have been rarely tested. Here, we present an inclusive cladistic analysis to determine and test the phylogenetic affinities of Periptychidae and other key Paleocene groups within Placentalia under different cladistic optimality criteria. We scored 140 taxa for 503 dental, cranial and postcranial characters, incorporating new morphological and taxonomic data. The data were then subject to parsimony and Bayesian tree of morphological evolution, running 5000000 generations with samples every 200 generations and discarding 25% of the samples as burn-in. Stationarity was achieved and a 50 percent majority rule consensus tree from the sampled trees was obtained. The parsimony analysis recovered 48 most parsimonious trees. The two consensus trees derived from the different analyses are largely congruent and recover a monophyletic Periptychidae, although the parsimony consensus tree is better resolved. These results are consistent with simulation studies showing that parsimony tends to be more precise (more nodes reconstructed) than Bayesian analyses, although less accurate. The main topological differences between the results relate to the position of poorly known Puercan (earliest Paleocene) species. Our results affirm the monophyly of Periptychidae and its nesting within a group of “condylarths” positioned at the base of Laurasiatheria and closely related to Artiodactyla. Within Periptychidae we found support for the three major subfamilial divisions in both analyses. These results highlight the importance of using different optimality criteria when resolving a phylogeny and provide a new insight into how placental mammals were evolving after the end-Cretaceous extinction. Grant Information: CONICYT PFCHA/DOCTORADO BECAS CHILE/2018, European Research Council Starting Grant (ERC StG 2017, 756226, PalM), National Science Foundation (NSF EAR 1654952, DEB 1654949) 
    more » « less
  2. South American Ungulates (SANUs) exhibit astonishing morphological and ecological diversity due to their almost complete isolation during their early evolution. This unique diversity coupled with the limited fossil record of their earliest evolution makes it difficult to establish their phylogenetic position within the placental mammal tree. Litopterna is the second most diverse order of SANUs after only Notoungulata, with species ranging from the middle Paleocene (~63 Ma) to the late Pleistocene. Among SANUs, litopterns are characterized by having cursorial limbs similar to Holarctic groups like Perissodactyla. Currently there are 67 genera of litopterns grouped into nine families, and the affinities of the Paleogene families remain unclear. Furthermore, it is unclear how litopterns are related to older groups of “archaic” Paleogene ungulates of South America (Kollpaninae and Didolodontidae) and North America (e.g., Mioclaenidae), and other SANUs. To test the phylogenetic relationships of Litopterna, we assembled a new morphological matrix with ~1000 craniodental and postcranial characters for 79 taxa. The data were subjected to Bayesian and maximum parsimony analyses. We conducted tip-dated and undated Bayesian analyses using a Mk + G model of morphological evolution. Fifty percent majority rule consensus trees were obtained from the sampled trees from each analysis. The parsimony analysis resulted in ten most parsimonious trees and a strict consensus was computed. The consensus trees derived from the different analyses were largely congruent. A traditional monophyletic Litopterna failed to be recovered as Protolipternidae was closely related to Didolodontidae. Litopterna was found more closely related to Kollpaninae than to North American Mioclaenidae, and Kollpaninae did not form a monophyletic group with the latter. Adianthidae and Indaleciidae were found in a relatively basal position within Litopterna. Macraucheniidae was found as a sister group to Proterotheriidae, whereas Anisolambdidae was the sister group of Sparnotheriodontidae, these four families forming a monophyletic group. By utilizing a more comprehensive approach, these results alter previous conceptions of the intrafamilial affinities within Litopterna and their position among other Paleogene ungulates, shedding new light on how litopterns evolved and diversified during the Paleogene of South America. Funding Sources ANID-PFCHA-Doctorado en el extranjero Becas Chile-2018-72190003, ERC starting grant PalM 756226, NSF DEB 1654949 and 1654952 
    more » « less
  3. Abstract

    In the age of next-generation sequencing, the number of loci available for phylogenetic analyses has increased by orders of magnitude. But despite this dramatic increase in the amount of data, some phylogenomic studies have revealed rampant gene-tree discordance that can be caused by many historical processes, such as rapid diversification, gene duplication, or reticulate evolution. We used a target enrichment approach to sample 400 single-copy nuclear genes and estimate the phylogenetic relationships of 13 genera in the lichen-forming family Lobariaceae to address the effect of data type (nucleotides and amino acids) and phylogenetic reconstruction method (concatenation and species tree approaches). Furthermore, we examined datasets for evidence of historical processes, such as rapid diversification and reticulate evolution. We found incongruence associated with sequence data types (nucleotide vs. amino acid sequences) and with different methods of phylogenetic reconstruction (species tree vs. concatenation). The resulting phylogenetic trees provided evidence for rapid and reticulate evolution based on extremely short branches in the backbone of the phylogenies. The observed rapid and reticulate diversifications may explain conflicts among gene trees and the challenges to resolving evolutionary relationships. Based on divergence times, the diversification at the backbone occurred near the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary (65 Mya) which is consistent with other rapid diversifications in the tree of life. Although some phylogenetic relationships within the Lobariaceae family remain with low support, even with our powerful phylogenomic dataset of up to 376 genes, our use of target-capturing data allowed for the novel exploration of the mechanisms underlying phylogenetic and systematic incongruence.

    more » « less
  4. Abstract

    The genusLiriomyzaMik (Diptera: Agromyzidae) is a diverse and globally distributed group of acalyptrate flies. Phylogenetic relationships amongLiriomyzaspecies have remained incompletely investigated and have never been fully addressed using molecular data. Here, we reconstruct the phylogeny of the genusLiriomyzausing various phylogenetic methods (maximum likelihood, Bayesian inference, and gene tree coalescence) on target‐capture‐based phylogenomic datasets (nucleotides and amino acids) obtained from anchored hybrid enrichment (AHE). We have recovered tree topologies that are nearly congruent across all data types and methods, and individual clade support is strong across all phylogenetic analyses. Moreover, defined morphological species groups and clades are well‐supported in our best estimates of the molecular phylogeny.Liriomyza violivora(Spencer) is a sister group to all remaining sampledLiriomyzaspecies, and the well‐known polyphagous vegetable pests [L. huidobrensis(Blanchard),L. langeiFrick,L. bryoniae.(Kaltenbach),L. trifolii(Burgess),L. sativaeBlanchard, andL. brassicae(Riley)]. belong to multiple clades that are not particularly closely related on the trees. Often, closely relatedLiriomyzaspecies feed on distantly related host plants. We reject the hypothesis that cophylogenetic processes betweenLiriomyzaspecies and their host plants drive diversification in this genus. Instead,Liriomyzaexhibits a widespread pattern of major host shifts across plant taxa. Our new phylogenetic estimate forLiriomyzaspecies provides considerable new information on the evolution of host‐use patterns in this genus. In addition, it provides a framework for further study of the morphology, ecology, and diversification of these important flies.

    more » « less
  5. Jiggins, Chris D. (Ed.)
    Our understanding of the evolutionary history of primates is undergoing continual revision due to ongoing genome sequencing efforts. Bolstered by growing fossil evidence, these data have led to increased acceptance of once controversial hypotheses regarding phylogenetic relationships, hybridization and introgression, and the biogeographical history of primate groups. Among these findings is a pattern of recent introgression between species within all major primate groups examined to date, though little is known about introgression deeper in time. To address this and other phylogenetic questions, here, we present new reference genome assemblies for 3 Old World monkey (OWM) species: Colobus angolensis ssp. palliatus (the black and white colobus), Macaca nemestrina (southern pig-tailed macaque), and Mandrillus leucophaeus (the drill). We combine these data with 23 additional primate genomes to estimate both the species tree and individual gene trees using thousands of loci. While our species tree is largely consistent with previous phylogenetic hypotheses, the gene trees reveal high levels of genealogical discordance associated with multiple primate radiations. We use strongly asymmetric patterns of gene tree discordance around specific branches to identify multiple instances of introgression between ancestral primate lineages. In addition, we exploit recent fossil evidence to perform fossil-calibrated molecular dating analyses across the tree. Taken together, our genome-wide data help to resolve multiple contentious sets of relationships among primates, while also providing insight into the biological processes and technical artifacts that led to the disagreements in the first place. 
    more » « less