Large multi-gene phylogenetic trees of the grasses (Poaceae): Progress towards complete tribal and generic level sampling

Yanis Bouchenak-Khelladi, Nicolas Salamin, Vincent Savolainen, Felix Forest, Michelle van der Bank, Mark W. Chase, Trevor R. Hodkinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

200 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper we included a very broad representation of grass family diversity (84% of tribes and 42% of genera). Phylogenetic inference was based on three plastid DNA regions rbcL, matK and trnL-F, using maximum parsimony and Bayesian methods. Our results resolved most of the subfamily relationships within the major clades (BEP and PACCMAD), which had previously been unclear, such as, among others the: (i) BEP and PACCMAD sister relationship, (ii) composition of clades and the sister-relationship of Ehrhartoideae and Bambusoideae + Pooideae, (iii) paraphyly of tribe Bambuseae, (iv) position of Gynerium as sister to Panicoideae, (v) phylogenetic position of Micrairoideae. With the presence of a relatively large amount of missing data, we were able to increase taxon sampling substantially in our analyses from 107 to 295 taxa. However, bootstrap support and to a lesser extent Bayesian inference posterior probabilities were generally lower in analyses involving missing data than those not including them. We produced a fully resolved phylogenetic summary tree for the grass family at subfamily level and indicated the most likely relationships of all included tribes in our analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)488-505
Number of pages18
JournalMolecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May 2008


  • Grasses (Pocaeae)
  • Large sample size
  • Missing data
  • Phylogenetic trees
  • Subfamilies
  • Tribes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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