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Genome-wide patterns of genetic diversity, population structure and demographic history in mānuka (Leptospermum scoparium) grown on indigenous Māori land
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  • Emily Koot,
  • Elise Arnst,
  • Melissa Taane,
  • Kelsey Goldsmith,
  • Eleanor Dormontt,
  • Tate Hancox,
  • Kate Delaporte,
  • Amali Thrimawithana,
  • Kiri Reihana,
  • Santiago C. González-Martínez,
  • Victor Goldsmith,
  • Gary Houliston,
  • David Chagné
Emily Koot
Plant and Food Research Palmerston North
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Elise Arnst
Manaaki Whenua
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Melissa Taane
Plant and Food Research Palmerston North
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Kelsey Goldsmith
Kaiaka Consulting Limited
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Eleanor Dormontt
The University of Adelaide
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Tate Hancox
The University of Adelaide
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Kate Delaporte
The University of Adelaide
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Amali Thrimawithana
Plant and Food Research Ltd
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Kiri Reihana
Manaaki Whenua
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Santiago C. González-Martínez
INRAE
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Victor Goldsmith
Kaiaka Consulting Limited
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Gary Houliston
Landcare Research New Zealand
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David Chagné
Plant and Food Research Palmerston North
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Abstract

Leptospermum scoparium J. R. Forst et G. Forst, known as mānuka by Māori, the indigenous people of Aotearoa (New Zealand), is a culturally and economically significant shrub species, native to New Zealand and Australia. Chemical, morphological and phylogenetic studies have indicated geographical variation of mānuka across its range in New Zealand, and genetic differentiation between New Zealand and Australia. We used pooled whole genome re-sequencing of 76 L. scoparium and outgroup populations from New Zealand and Australia to compile a dataset totalling ~2.5 million SNPs. We explored the genetic structure and relatedness of L. scoparium across New Zealand, and between populations in New Zealand and Australia, as well as the complex demographic history of this species. Our population genomic investigation suggests there are five geographically distinct mānuka gene pools within New Zealand, with evidence of gene flow occurring between these pools. Demographic modelling suggests three of these gene pools have undergone expansion events, whilst the evolutionary histories of the remaining two have been subjected to contractions. Furthermore, mānuka populations in New Zealand are genetically distinct from populations in Australia, with coalescent modelling suggesting these two clades diverged ~9 –12 million years ago. We discuss the evolutionary history of this species and the benefits of using pool-seq for such studies. Our research will support the management and conservation of mānuka by landowners, particularly Māori, and the development of a provenance story for the branding of mānuka based products.

Peer review status:UNDER REVIEW

21 Apr 2021Submitted to Molecular Ecology
22 Apr 2021Assigned to Editor
22 Apr 2021Submission Checks Completed
22 Apr 2021Reviewer(s) Assigned