Annals of Botany

Evolution of Rainbow rockcress highlights Anatolia as a cradle of biodiversity

Phylogenetic and demographic analyses were employed to shed light on the species boundaries, evolutionary history and species diversity of genus Aubrieta (Brassicaceae). DNA sequence based mismatch-distribution and climate-niche analyses were performed to explain various radiations in space and time during the last 2.5 million years since the Pleistocene in the Eastern Mediterranean and Asia Minor.

TCS network of nuclear-encoded ITS types.
TCS network of nuclear-encoded ITS types. Small black circles without haplotype codes indicate non-sampled or extinct haplotypes.

Koch et al. demonstrate that Anatolia served as the primary centre for subsequent diversification in Greece and expansion South to Lebanon and West to the Balkans and Italy. Early expansion and diversification showed adaptation trends towards higher temperature and drier conditions with subsequent secondary diversification tending towards milder temperatures and less arid conditions.


Koch, M. A., Karl, R., & German, D. A. (2016). Underexplored biodiversity of Eastern Mediterranean biota: systematics and evolutionary history of the genus Aubrieta (Brassicaceae). Annals of Botany, 119(1), 39–57.

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Annals of Botany Office

The Annals of Botany Office is based at the University of Oxford.