Chromosome numbers and the systematics of tribe Vochysieae (Vochysiaceae)

<div><p>ABSTRACT With five neotropical genera and ca. 220 species, Vochysieae is the largest tribe of Vochysiaceae, comprising more than 90 % of its species. Preliminary phylogenetic analyses with matK sequence data indicated that Vochysieae may be paraphyletic, separated into the clades QRC (Qualea, Ruizterania and Callisthene) and VS (Vochysia, Salvertia). Whether the genera and the infrageneric taxa are artificial is still controversial. In this study, we analyzed the distribution of chromosome numbers in mitotic or meiotic cells among 20 species belonging to the genera Callisthene, Qualea, Salvertia, and Vochysia, that are native and common in Central and Southeast Brazilian forests or savannas. Species of Callisthene and Qualea possessed 2n = 22, while species of Salvertia and Vochysia had 2n = 24 (or n = 12). These chromosome numbers corroborate the recognition of two groups, and also suggest that chromosome evolution based on numerical variation is conservative in these lineages.</p></div>