Using next-generation sequencing for molecular reconstruction of past Arctic vegetation and climate

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningfagfællebedømt

J. H. Sønstebø, L. Gielly, A. K. Brysting, R. Elven, M. Edwards, James Seymour Haile, Eske Willerslev, E. Coissac, D. Rioux, J. Sannier, P. Taberlet, C. Brochmann

Palaeoenvironments and former climates are typically inferred from pollen and macrofossil records. This approach is time-consuming and suffers from low taxonomic resolution and biased taxon sampling. Here, we test an alternative DNA-based approach utilizing the P6 loop in the chloroplast trnL (UAA) intron; a short (13-158 bp) and variable region with highly conserved flanking sequences. For taxonomic reference, a whole trnL intron sequence database was constructed from recently collected material of 842 species, representing all widespread and/or ecologically important taxa of the species-poor arctic flora. The P6 loop alone allowed identification of all families, most genera (>75%) and one-third of the species, thus providing much higher taxonomic resolution than pollen records. The suitability of the P6 loop for analysis of samples containing degraded ancient DNA from a mixture of species is demonstrated by high-throughput parallel pyrosequencing of permafrost-preserved DNA and reconstruction of two plant communities from the last glacial period. Our approach opens new possibilities for DNA-based assessment of ancient as well as modern biodiversity of many groups of organisms using environmental samples.
TidsskriftMolecular Ecology Resources
Udgave nummer6
Sider (fra-til)1009-1018
Antal sider10
StatusUdgivet - nov. 2010

ID: 33950603