The phylogenetic positions of Japanese Abies species (A. firma, A. homolepis, A. veitchii, A. sachalinensis, and A. mariesii) were revealed based on nucleotide sequences of chloroplast DNA. First, rbcL sequences of 24 Abies species worldwide were analyzed to clarify the phylogenetic position of the Japanese Abies within this genus. While 4 of the Japanese species formed a monophyletic group with almost no sequence divergence, A. mariesii was placed into a clearly different group with North American species. Second, to clarify the relationships among the species in the monophyletic group, sequences of rbcL, matK, and six spacer regions (total ca. 5 kb) were analyzed for 12 species of the group, with A. mariesii as an outgroup. Although a unique sequence and some species-specific sequences were detected in A. mariesii and in A. firma and A. homolepis, respectively, A. veitchii and A. sachalinensis gave identical sequences for all the sequenced regions. (C) 2000 Academic Press.
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