The obligate, biotrophic association among species of the fungal genus Cyttaria and their hosts in the plant genus Nothofagas often is cited as a classic example of cophylogeny and is one of the few cases in which the biogeography of a fungus is commonly mentioned or included in biogeographic analyses. In this study molecular and morphological data are used to examine hypotheses regarding the cophylogeny and biogeography of the 12 species of Cyttaria and their hosts, the 11 species of Nothofagas subgenera Lophozonia and Nothofagus. Our results indicate highly significant overall cophylogenetic structure, despite the fact that the associations between species of Cyttaria and Nothojagus usually do not correspond in a simple one to one relationship. Two major lineages of Cyttaria are confined to a single Nothofagus subgenus, a specificity that might. account for a minimum of two codivergences. We hypothesize other major codivergences. Numerous extinction also are assumed, as are an independent. parasite divergence followed by host switching to account for C. berteroi. Considering the historical association of Cyttaria and Nothofagus, our hypothesis may support the vicariance hypothesis for the trans-Antarctic distribution between Australasian and South American species of Cyttaria species hosted by subgenus Lophozonia. It also supports the hypothesis of transoceanic long distance dispersal to account for the relatively recent relationship between Australian and New Zealand Cyttaria species, which we estimate to have occurred 44.6-28.5 mya. Thus the history of these organisms is not only a reflection of the breakup of Gondwana but also of other events that have contributed to the distributions of many other southern hemisphere plants and fungi.
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