60 Million years of co-divergence in the fig-wasp symbiosis

Nina Rønsted, George D Weiblen, James M. Cook, Nicolas Salamin, Carlos A. Machado, Vincent Savolainen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

178 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Figs (Ficus; ca 750 species) and fig wasps (Agaoninae) are obligate mutualists: all figs are pollinated by agaonines that feed exclusively on figs. This extraordinary symbiosis is the most extreme example of specialization in a plant-pollinator interaction and has fuelled much speculation about co-divergence. The hypothesis that pollinator specialization led to the parallel diversification of fig and pollinator lineages (co-divergence) has so far not been tested due to the lack of robust and comprehensive phylogenetic hypotheses for both partners. We produced and combined the most comprehensive molecular phylogenetic trees to date with fossil data to generate independent age estimates for fig and pollinator lineages, using both non-parametric rate smoothing and penalized likelihood dating methods. Molecular dating of ten pairs of interacting lineages provides an unparalleled example of plant-insect co-divergence over a geological time frame spanning at least 60 million years.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2593-2599
Number of pages7
JournalProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume272
Issue number1581
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 22 2005

Fingerprint

Agaonidae
Ficus
Wasps
Symbiosis
figs
symbiosis
wasp
pollinator
pollinating insects
divergence
plant-pollinator interaction
phylogenetics
dating method
geological time
smoothing
fossil
insect
phylogeny
fossils
Insects

Keywords

  • Agaoninae
  • Co-divergence
  • Co-speciation
  • Ficus
  • Molecular dating
  • Phylogeny

Cite this

60 Million years of co-divergence in the fig-wasp symbiosis. / Rønsted, Nina; Weiblen, George D; Cook, James M.; Salamin, Nicolas; Machado, Carlos A.; Savolainen, Vincent.

In: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Vol. 272, No. 1581, 22.12.2005, p. 2593-2599.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Rønsted, N, Weiblen, GD, Cook, JM, Salamin, N, Machado, CA & Savolainen, V 2005, '60 Million years of co-divergence in the fig-wasp symbiosis', Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, vol. 272, no. 1581, pp. 2593-2599. https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2005.3249
Rønsted, Nina ; Weiblen, George D ; Cook, James M. ; Salamin, Nicolas ; Machado, Carlos A. ; Savolainen, Vincent. / 60 Million years of co-divergence in the fig-wasp symbiosis. In: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 2005 ; Vol. 272, No. 1581. pp. 2593-2599.
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