J Syst Evol ›› 2022, Vol. 60 ›› Issue (3): 640-652.DOI: 10.1111/jse.12843

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Plastid phylogenomics shed light on intergeneric relationships and spatiotemporal evolutionary history of Melocanninae (Poaceae: Bambusoideae)

Meng‐Yuan Zhou1†, Jing‐Xia Liu1†, Peng‐Fei Ma1, Jun‐Bo Yang1, and De‐Zhu Li1,2*   

  1. 1 Germplasm Bank of Wild Species, Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming 650201, China
    2 Key Laboratory for Plant Diversity and Biogeography of East Asia, Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming 650201, China

    † These authors contributed equally to this work.
    *Author for correspondence. E‐mail: dzl@mail.kib.ac.cn
  • Received:2021-06-24 Accepted:2022-03-01 Online:2022-03-15 Published:2022-05-01


Melocanninae is sister to other subtribes of Paleotropical woody bamboos with some 90 species mainly concentrated in Asia. However, phylogenetic relationships within the subtribe are poorly known. Here, we filled the gaps in complete plastome data of Melocanninae, reconstructed the phylogeny of Melocanninae, and further estimated divergence time and ancestral distribution range. Our results showed that the two major genera, Cephalostachyum Munro and Schizostachyum Nees, were paraphyletic. Species of Cephalostachyum were resolved in two successive basal clades, whereas Annamocalamus H. N. Nguyen, N. H. Xia, & V. T. Tran was embedded in the Schizostachyum clade. Different plastid regions provided inconsistent signals for the relationship of Melocanna and Pseudostachyum. Conservative loci supported a successive divergence rather than sister relationship between them and the difference may be caused by long-branch attraction. We infer that Melocanninae originated in the East Himalaya to northern Myanmar in the early Miocene. Three routes were revealed in forming its present biogeographic pattern: in situ diversification on the Asian mainland, dispersing southwest to Sri Lanka and to the Western Ghats in South India, and spreading southeast to Malesia and Oceania by way of the Indo-China Peninsula. The rapid uplift of the Tibetan Plateau and the intensification of Asian monsoons since the Miocene and the sea level fall events since the Late Miocene might be potential driving forces for diversification of Melocanninae and, particularly the latter event, for the species radiation of Schizostachyum.

Key words: biogeography, diversification rate shift, Melocanninae, Paleotropical woody bamboo, phylogenomics, plastome, species radiation