The Phylogenetic Dimension of Insect-Plant Interactions: A Review of Recent Evidence

Isaac S. Winkler and Charles Mitter

in Specialization, Speciation, and Radiation

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2008 | ISBN: 9780520251328
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520933828 | DOI:
The Phylogenetic Dimension of Insect-Plant Interactions: A Review of Recent Evidence

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Since the early 1990s, spurred in part by the increasing accessibility of molecular systematics, there has been a happy profusion of phylogenetic studies of interacting insect and plant lineages. The results so far have reinforced skepticism about the ubiquity of the particular macroevolutionary scenario envisioned by Ehrlich and Raven, now commonly termed “escape and radiation” coevolution. This chapter examines some of the postulates about phylogenetic history derivable from Ehrlich and Raven's essay, and evaluates their utility for explaining the structure of contemporary insect–plant interactions. It reviews recent evidence on the phylogeny of insect–plant interactions, focusing chiefly on among-species differences in larval host-plant use by herbivorous insect lineages. The chapter also discusses the conservatism of host-plant use; parallelism, reversal, and genetic constraints on host shift; conservatism, host shifts, and speciation; phylogenesis of host range; signatures of long-term history in extant insect–plant interactions; and diversification of phytophagous insects.

Keywords: escape and radiation; coevolution; insect–plant interactions; phylogeny; host-plant use; conservatism; host shifts; speciation; diversification; phytophagous insects

Chapter.  18864 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Evolutionary Biology

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