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Population dynamics of Agriophyllum squarrosum, a pioneer annual plant endemic to mobile sand dunes, in response to global climate change
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2016 (English)In: Scientific Reports, ISSN 2045-2322, E-ISSN 2045-2322, Vol. 6, 26613Article in journal (Refereed) Published
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Abstract [en]

Climate change plays an important role in the transition of ecosystems. Stratigraphic investigations have suggested that the Asian interior experienced frequent transitions between grassland and desert ecosystems as a consequence of global climate change. Using maternally and bi-parentally inherited markers, we investigated the population dynamics of Agriophyllum squarrosum (Chenopodiaceae), an annual pioneer plant endemic to mobile sand dunes. Phylogeographic analysis revealed that A. squarrosum could originate from Gurbantunggut desert since similar to 1.6 Ma, and subsequently underwent three waves of colonisation into other deserts and sandy lands corresponding to several glaciations. The rapid population expansion and distribution range shifts of A. squarrosum from monsoonal climate zones suggested that the development of the monsoonal climate significantly enhanced the population growth and gene flow of A. squarrosum. These data also suggested that desertification of the fragile grassland ecosystems in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau was more ancient than previously suggested and will be aggravated under global warming in the future. This study provides new molecular phylogeographic insights into how pioneer annual plant species in desert ecosystems respond to global climate change, and facilitates evaluation of the ecological potential and genetic resources of future crops for non-arable dry lands to mitigate climate change.

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2016. Vol. 6, 26613
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Ecology Climate Research
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URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-122563DOI: 10.1038/srep26613ISI: 000376464600001PubMedID: 27210568OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-122563DiVA: diva2:949877
Available from: 2016-07-25 Created: 2016-06-20 Last updated: 2017-11-28Bibliographically approved

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Wang, Xiao-Ru
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Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences
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