Authors: Möller, Michael; Forrest, Alan; Wei, Yi-Gang; Weber, Anton
Publication: Plant Systematics and Evolution
Year: 2011
Genera: Many Genera

Based on a considerably enlarged sampling, a phylogenetic analysis of the largest group of didymocarpoid Gesneriaceae, the “advanced Asiatic and Malesian genera”, was performed, covering all but 3 of the 60 genera presently recognised in this group (20 of these, mostly from China, are monotypic). The results suggest that no fewer than 17 out of the 57 genera examined are poly- (or rarely para-)phyletic. Highly polyphyletic are Briggsia, Chirita, Henckelia and Raphiocarpus. Only a dozen of the non-monotypic genera (including the three species-richest genera, Cyrtandra, Aeschynanthus and Agalmyla) are confirmed as monophyletic entities, though some exhibit considerable genetic variation. For eight genera, no statement can be made, as only one (of two or several) species was included in the analysis. For a dozen of the (particularly Chinese) monotypic genera a close relationship (or possible congenerity) with other genera was found. In China, only Allostigma, Cathayanthe, Conandron and Metapetrocosmea seem to have no strong affinities to other genera, indicating that they represent phylogenetically isolated lineages or represent remnants of previously larger and earlier diversified groups. The present study forms the foundation for targeted molecular, morphological and phytogeographic studies of the polyphyletic and monotypic genera and particular of clades of genera with interrelations uncovered here for the first time.