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T-bana: Universitetet
Frescativägen 40

Ordinarie öppettider:
Tisdag–fredag 11–17
Lördag–söndag 10–18

  • Huvudmeny

From intraspecific diversity to hidden species diversity among mosses

The wetland moss Sarmentypnum exannulatum in a fen

Sarmentypnum exannulatum is a widespread wetland species that includes genetic variants restricted to the north and mountains. Photo: L. Hedenäs.


Biodiversity includes three components, genetic, species, and ecosystem diversity. The fundamental genetic diversity has so far been much less studied than the other two components. Species are artificial but necessary constructs to facilitate communication, whereas genetic diversity and variation within and among morphological units identified as species may unravel patterns and processes that are otherwise invisible. The latter are often crucial for our understanding of nature as well as for biodiversity conservation.

In this long-term project I primarily study widespread moss species from different lineages, often in co-operation with colleagues at other institutions. Geographically, I focus on Europe or Scandinavia. I explore genetic diversity and composition and focus on the variation among closely related species or among geographical regions. The gained information allows answering questions concerning immigration history, regional distribution of diversity, effects of climate change, frequency of cryptic speciation, and incidence of hybridization or other exchange of genetic material. My current focus is on colonization patterns, based on genetic variation and reproductive biology at the regional scale in Sweden, and on European intraspecific diversity patterns.

This research is funded by

various sources, recently by Carl Stenholms Donationsfond, Carl Tryggers Stiftelse för Vetenskaplig Forskning, Internal funds, and Stiftelsen Anna och Gunnar Vidfelts fond för biologisk forskning

External Project Participants

University of Liège, Belgium

Stockholm University, Sweden

University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

University of South Bohemia, České Budějovice, Czech Republic

Selected Publications

Hedenäs, L. 2019. On the frequency of northern and mountain genetic variants of widespread species: essential biodiversity information in a warmer world. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 191: 440-474. DOI 10.1093/botlinnean/boz061external link

Collart, F., Hedenäs, L., Broennimann, O., Guisan, A. & Vanderpoorten, A. 2020. Intraspecific differentiation: Implications for niche and distribution modelling. Journal of Biogeography 48: 415-426 DOI 10.1111/jbi.14009

For further publications by Lars Hedenäs: Google scholarexternal link, opens in new window