Document Type


Publication Date

January 2011


• Premise of the study : The clusioid clade includes five families (i.e., Bonnetiaceae, Calophyllaceae, Clusiaceae s.s., Hypericaceae, and Podostemaceae) represented by 94 genera and ~1900 species. Species in this clade form a conspicuous element of tropical forests worldwide and are important in horticulture, timber production, and pharmacology. We conducted a taxon-rich multigene phylogenetic analysis of the clusioids to clarify phylogenetic relationships in this clade.

• Methods : We analyzed plastid ( matK , ndhF , and rbcL ) and mitochondrial ( matR ) nucleotide sequence data using parsimony, maximum likelihood, and Bayesian inference. Our combined data set included 194 species representing all major clusioid subclades, plus numerous species spanning the taxonomic, morphological, and biogeographic breadth of the clusioid clade.

• Key results : Our results indicate that Tovomita (Clusiaceae s.s.), Harungana and Hypericum (Hypericaceae), and Ledermanniella

s.s. and Zeylanidium (Podostemaceae) are not monophyletic. In addition, we place four genera that have not been included in any previous molecular study: Ceratolacis , Diamantina , and Griffi thella (Podostemaceae), and Santomasia (Hypericaceae). Finally, our results indicate that Lianthus , Santomasia , Thornea , and Triadenum can be safely merged into Hypericum (Hypericaceae).

• Conclusions : We present the first well-resolved, taxon-rich phylogeny of the clusioid clade. Taxon sampling and resolution within the clade are greatly improved compared to previous studies and provide a strong basis for improving the classification of the group. In addition, our phylogeny will form the foundation for our future work investigating the biogeography of tropical angiosperms that exhibit Gondwanan distributions.