A team of Austrian, Swiss and German researchers the Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre (BiK-F), the Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung and the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), from the University of Leipzig and the Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology has summarized the current state of knowledge on the diversification of Tibetan plants and animals. Scientists The study focuses in particular on how the geological processes that led to the rise of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau and Himalayas affected diversification and speciation directly, and indirectly, e.g. by changing climatic conditions. The paper was recently published in Biological Reviews.
“We believe this paper may become a benchmark for geo-biological studies worldwide. It links the geological, climatic and evolutionary history of one of the most fascinating and biodiverse regions of the world, and builds up a promising framework for more hypothesis-driven and synthetic research”, says Prof. Alexandra Muellner-Riehl, from the Department of Molecular Evolution and Systematics of Plants in Leipzig. She heads the DFG Research Cluster and is also member of the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig.
Muellner-Riehl and her collaborators found that the link between diversity, speciation and the geological processes was still poorly understood. They identified two main reasons for this: different authors tend to use a different geological framework in their studies, and they apply different analytical approaches and data that are poorly comparable.
The authors show three ways how our understanding of the link between uplift processes of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau and the Himalayas and species diversity can be improved:
1) They provide a state-of-the-art scenario how the uplift occurred and how this influenced regional climates over the last 40 million years; this will allow future researchers to formulate clear and comparable hypotheses.
2) They summarize recent analytical developments that allow scientists to make the link between geology and diversification more quantitative and less ad hoc.
3) They propose using meta-analyses of many comparable data sets to help researchers gain a broader understanding of species diversity in the region.
“It is very likely that the uplift of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau had different impacts on the evolution of different taxa”, lead author Dr. Adrien Favre, Department of Molecular Evolution and Systematics of Plants, University of Leipzig, Germany, points out. “We wanted to provide details on the criteria that individual data sets should meet to guide future research”, adds co-author Dr. Steffen Pauls, Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre (BiK-F).
This research is presented in the paper “The role of the uplift of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau for the evolution of Tibetan biotas” to appear in Biological Reviews (DOI 10.1111/brv.12107). The scientific article is available online (open access), free of charge: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/brv.12107/full
The team is composed of Adrien Favre 1,2, Martin Päckert 2,3, Steffen U. Pauls 2, Sonja C. Jähnig 2,4, Dieter Uhl 5, Ingo Michalak 1 and Alexandra N. Muellner-Riehl 1,2,6
1 Department of Molecular Evolution and Systematics of Plants, University of Leipzig, Germany
2 Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre (BiK-F) & Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung, Frankfurt am Main, Germany
3 Senckenberg Natural History Collections, Museum für Tierkunde, Dresden, Germany
4 Department of Ecosystem Research, Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB), Berlin, Germany
5 Section of Palaeoclimate and Palaeoenvironmental Research, Senckenberg Research Institute and Natural History Museum, Frankfurt, Germany
6 German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena Leipzig, Germany
For more information please contact
Prof. Dr. Alexandra Muellner-Riehl
Department of Molecular Evolution and Systematics of Plants,
Institute of Biology, Leipzig University
Tel. +49-(0)341 97-38581
Dr. Steffen Pauls
LOEWE Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre (BiK-F)
Tel. +49 (0)69 7542 1841
LOEWE Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre (BiK-F)
Tel. +49 (0)69 7542 1838
http://- Press release and more press images
http://- LOEWE Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre
Sabine Wendler | Senckenberg
Volcanic eruption masked acceleration in sea level rise
26.08.2016 | National Science Foundation
Biomass turnover time in ecosystems is halved by land use
23.08.2016 | Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt
Scientists and engineers striving to create the next machine-age marvel--whether it be a more aerodynamic rocket, a faster race car, or a higher-efficiency jet...
Waveguides are widely used for filtering, confining, guiding, coupling or splitting beams of visible light. However, creating waveguides that could do the same for X-rays has posed tremendous challenges in fabrication, so they are still only in an early stage of development.
In the latest issue of Acta Crystallographica Section A: Foundations and Advances , Sarah Hoffmann-Urlaub and Tim Salditt report the fabrication and testing of...
Electrochemists at TU Graz have managed to use monocrystalline semiconductor silicon as an active storage electrode in lithium batteries. This enables an integrated power supply to be made for microchips with a rechargeable battery.
Small electrical gadgets, such as mobile phones, tablets or notebooks, are indispensable accompaniments of everyday life. Integrated circuits in the interiors...
Recent findings indicating the possible discovery of a previously unknown subatomic particle may be evidence of a fifth fundamental force of nature, according...
A nanocrystalline material that rapidly makes white light out of blue light has been developed by KAUST researchers.
25.08.2016 | Event News
24.08.2016 | Event News
12.08.2016 | Event News
26.08.2016 | Health and Medicine
26.08.2016 | Earth Sciences
26.08.2016 | Life Sciences