Journal article

Unique biodiversity in Arctic marine forests is shaped by diverse recolonization pathways and far northern glacial refugia

Trevor T Bringloe, Heroen Verbruggen, Gary W Saunders

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences | NATL ACAD SCIENCES | Published : 2020


The Arctic is experiencing a rapid shift toward warmer regimes, calling for a need to understand levels of biodiversity and ecosystem responses to climate cycles. This study presents genetic data for 109 Arctic marine forest species (seaweeds), which revealed contiguous populations extending from the Bering Sea to the northwest Atlantic, with high levels of genetic diversity in the east Canadian Arctic. One-fifth of the species sampled appeared restricted to Arctic waters. Further supported by hindcasted species distributions during the Last Glacial Maximum, we hypothesize that Arctic coastal systems were recolonized from many geographically disparate refugia leading to enriched diversity le..

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Awarded by Natural Sciences & Engineering Research Council of Canada through a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Post-Graduate Scholarship

Funding Acknowledgements

We thank the many people who facilitated the collection of specimens: Dr. Meghann Bruce, Dr. Kyatt Dixon, Kirby Morrill, Dr. Amanda Savoie; Dr. Kenneth Dunton at the University of Texas for facilitating our sampling in the Beaufort (northern Alaska); Dr. Yotsukura Norishige at Hokkaido University for providing collections from Hokkaido; Dr. Kjersti Sjotun at the University of Bergen for facilitating our sampling in Norway; Don Stiles and James Horner for facilitating the collection of samples in Nome, Alaska; Laura Borden for providing collections from Cambridge Bay (Nunavut); and Dr. Selivanova and Dr. Zhigadlova for providing specimens from Kamchatka (Russia). We thank those who helped generate COI-5P data, particularly Tanya Moore, as well as Alex Geoffroy and Line Le Gall for providing trace files; Drs. Jorge Assis and Ester Serrao for providing critical feedback regarding analyses; Dr. Jason Addison for providing critical input leading to the inception of this manuscript; and the health professionals and other essential service providers around the world that have been working on the "front lines" during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, which began while this manuscript was under review. We also recognize the Traditional Inhabitants of both ceded and unceded territory on which research is conducted, in particular for this current research the Inuit (Canadian Arctic), the Nunatsiavut (Labrador), and Inupiat (Northern Alaska). We also acknowledge that gains in contemporary knowledge invariably build on a history of race and gender discrimination. This project was funded by the Northern Scientific Training Program, the Natural Sciences & Engineering Research Council of Canada through a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Post-Graduate Scholarship (to T.T.B.), Discovery Grant 170151-2013 (to G.W.S.), the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation, and the University of Melbourne McKenzie Postdoctoral Fellowship program.