A Taxonomic Reassessment of Consolida (Ranunculaceae) Species: Insight from Morphological and Molecular Data

Document Type : Research Article


1 Faculty of Biological science, Alzahra University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Biology, Central Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

3 Medicinal Plants & Drugs Research Institute, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran


In order to compare the efficiency of morphological traits and molecular markers in distinguishing the Consolida species, molecular analysis using nrDNA ITS and cpDNA trnL-trnF with maximum parsimony and Bayesian methods were done in a total of 34 species and forma representing 28 species of Consolida, 6 species of Aconitella, plus two species of Delphinium and two species of Aconitum as out groups.  Beside phenetic analysis for 20 quantitative morphological traits in 17 species of Consolida in Iran are performed. The molecular analysis, based on successive reweighting by rescaled consistency index, revealed thatMaximum parsimony method and Bayesian analysis gave very similar results based on individual and combine data sets. In the combined analysis (chloroplast and nuclear DNA) recovered most parsimonious trees (L= 558 steps, CI=0.695, RI=0.827). The ITS results revealed that Consolida is not monophyletic and the genus Aconitella is clearly nested within Consolida. Our results confirms the decrease of C. paradoxa Bunge to a forma of C. rugulosa alsoconfirmed the decrease of C. kabulica as a variety of C. stokciana. One way ANOVA, principal component analysis (PCA) and cluster analysis were used in phenetic analysis to visualize the species among different traits. Most of the quantitative morphological traits which showed significant differences between populations were deleted. PCA and cluster analysis carried out for morphological traits divided the Consolida species in to two cluster and A. barbata has separated from other species. Aconitella species are located in separate cluster and location of other species are almost similar to molecular results.


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