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Synthesis of phylogeny and taxonomy into a comprehensive tree of life [PNAS]

Keywords : phylogeny, taxonomy, tree of life, biodiversity, synthesis

par Frédéric Magné - publié le

Reconstructing the phylogenetic relationships that unite all lineages (the tree of life) is a grand challenge. The paucity of homologous character data across disparately related lineages currently renders direct phylogenetic inference untenable. To reconstruct a comprehensive tree of life, we therefore synthesized published phylogenies, together with taxonomic classifications for taxa never incorporated into a phylogeny. We present a draft tree containing 2.3 million tips—the Open Tree of Life. Realization of this tree required the assembly of two additional community resources : (i) a comprehensive global reference taxonomy and (ii) a database of published phylogenetic trees mapped to this taxonomy.

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