||Evolution of plant drought strategies and herbivore tolerance after two decades of climate change
||Rauschkolb, R.; Li, Z.; Godefroid, S.; Dixon, L.; Durka, W.
; Májeková, M.; Bossdorf, O.; Ensslin, A.; Scheepens, J.F.
|Journal / Serie
||T5 Future Landscapes
||climate change, common garden experiments, drought, herbivory, rapid evolution, resurrection approach, QST-FST, seed banks
- Ongoing global warming, coupled with increased drought
frequencies, together with other biotic drivers may have resulted in
complex evolutionary adaptation. The resurrection approach, comparing
ancestors raised from stored seeds with their contemporary descendants
under common conditions, is a powerful method to test for recent
evolution in plant populations.
- We used 21-26-year-old seeds of four European plant species – Matthiola tricuspidata, Plantago crassifolia, Clinopodium vulgare and Leontodon hispidus
– stored in seed banks together with re-collected seeds from their wild
populations. To test for evolutionary changes, we conducted a
greenhouse experiment that quantified heritable changes in plant
responses to drought and simulated insect herbivory.
- In three out of the four studied species, we found
evidence that descendants evolved shorter life cycles through faster
growth and flowering. Shifts in the osmotic potential and leaf dry
matter content indicated that descendants also evolved increased drought
tolerance. A comparison of QST vs. FST
values, using ddRAD genotyping data, suggested that directional
selection, and therefore adaptive evolution, was underlying some of the
observed phenotypic changes.
- In summary, our study reveals evolutionary changes in
plant populations over the last decades that are consistent with
adaptation of drought escape and tolerance as well as herbivory
|Rauschkolb, R., Li, Z., Godefroid, S., Dixon, L., Durka, W., Májeková, M., Bossdorf, O., Ensslin, A., Scheepens, J.F. (2022):
Evolution of plant drought strategies and herbivore tolerance after two decades of climate change
New Phytol. 235 (2), 773 - 785