Pseudevernia furfuracea – patterns of diversity in a shrubby lichen

Pseudevernia furfuracea is actually a shrubby lichen typically seen around the Baltic Sea. The lichen seems to reproduce usually by producing isidia, propagules of the lichen cortex. It is very morphologically and chemically different and is found on different substrates, for example nutrient poor bark trees and rocks. The primary aim of this research was to explain genetic variation in the ITS region and link this to variations in morphology, substrate ecology and secondary chemistry. As a whole, Thirty six specimens of P. furfuracea were gathered from Twenty one sites in Sweden, Finland and Estonia. Seven haplotypes were distinguished in the ITS region. A statistically important link between haplotype and colouration of the lichen was found. Lighter coloured specimens of P. furfuracea are more prone to be of the ancestral haplotype. Hardly any other major correlations between the different characteristics analyzed were found, suggesting that P. furfuracea needs to be viewed as a single species within the Baltic Sea area. This is also backed up by the haplotype network.


Lichen taxonomy
Lichen reproduction and dispersal
Pseudevernia furfuracea
Main objective
DNA extraction, PCR amplification and sequence alignment
Secondary substances
Haplotype network construction and statistical approach
Genetic variation
Secondary chemistry
Substrate ecology
Combining characteristics
Haplotype distribution
Correlation between haplotype and morphology
Substrate ecology
Secondary substances
Sampling bias

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Source: Sodertorn University

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