Biodiversity Science ›› 2017, Vol. 25 ›› Issue (2): 163-174.doi: 10.17520/biods.2016293

• Orginal Article • Previous Article     Next Article

Evolution and maintenance mechanisms of plant diversity in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and adjacent regions: retrospect and prospect

Jie Liu1, Yahuang Luo1, Dezhu Li2, Lianming Gao1, *()   

  1. 1 Key Laboratory for Plant Diversity and Biogeography of East Asia, Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming 650201
    2 Germplasm Bank of Wild Species in Southwest China, Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming 650201
  • Received:2016-10-12 Accepted:2017-02-13 Online:2017-03-06
  • Gao Lianming

The evolution and maintenance of biodiversity is largely determined by the interaction of genetics and environmental factors. Geological and climatic histories, which played pivotal roles in the evolution and maintenance of plant diversity in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP) and adjacent regions, are the most important environmental aspects. We review the major effects of QTP environmental changes associated with geological uplift, Asian monsoon evolution, and Pleistocene climatic oscillation on the origin, evolution, population demography, and maintenance mechanisms of plant diversity in the QTP and adjacent regions across spatiotemporal scales. Furthermore, we summarize the current progress and knowledge gaps on mechanisms of diversification and maintenance of plant diversity, and outline the effect of climate change on plant genetic diversity, hybrid zone dynamics, plant diversity patterns, the effect of Asian Monsoon evolution on plant diversity maintenance, and mechanisms of community assembly, the five additional future research hotspots.

Key words: climate change, hybridization, plant diversity, population demography, Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

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