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Species Delimitation using Genome-Wide SNP Data.

TitleSpecies Delimitation using Genome-Wide SNP Data.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsLeaché AD, Fujita MK, Minin VN, Bouckaert RR
JournalSystematic biology
Date Published2014 Mar 12

The multispecies coalescent has provided important progress for evolutionary inferences, including increasing the statistical rigor and objectivity of comparisons among competing species delimitation models. However, Bayesian species delimitation methods typically require brute force integration over gene trees via Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC), which introduces a large computation burden and precludes their application to genomic-scale data. Here we combine a recently introduced dynamic programming algorithm for estimating species trees that bypasses MCMC integration over gene trees with sophisticated methods for estimating marginal likelihoods, needed for Bayesian model selection, to provide a rigorous and computationally tractable technique for genome-wide species delimitation. We provide a critical yet simple correction that brings the likelihoods of different species trees, and more importantly their corresponding marginal likelihoods, to the same common denominator, which enables direct and accurate comparisons of competing species delimitation models using Bayes factors. We test this approach, which we call Bayes factor delimitation (*with genomic data; BFD*), using common species delimitation scenarios with computer simulations. Varying the numbers of loci and the number of samples suggest that the approach can distinguish the true model even with few loci and limited samples per species. Misspecification of the prior for population size θ has little impact on support for the true model. We apply the approach to West African forest geckos (Hemidactylus fasciatus complex) using genome-wide SNP data. This new Bayesian method for species delimitation builds on a growing trend for objective species delimitation methods with explicit model assumptions that are easily tested.

Alternate JournalSyst. Biol.