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Phylogenetic relationships within Celastraceae were inferred using a simultaneous analysis of 61 morphological characters and 1123 base pairs of phytochrome B exon 1 from the nuclear genome. No gaps were interred, and the gene tree topology suggests that the primers were specific to a single locus that did not duplicate among the lineages sampled. This region of phytochrome B was most useful for examining relationships among closely related genera. Fifty-one species from 38 genera of Celastraceae were sampled. The Celastraceae sensu lato (including Hippocrateaceae) were resolved as a monophyletic group. Loesener's subfamilies and tribes of Celastraceae were not supported. The Hippocrateaceae were resolved as a monophyletic group nested within a paraphyletic Celastraceae sensu stricto. Goupia was resolved as more closely related to Euphorbiaceae, Corynocarpaceae, and Linaceae than to Celastraceae. Plagiopteron (Flacourtiaceae) was resolved as the sister group of Hippocrateoideae. Brexia (Brexiaceae) was resolved as closely related to Elaeodendron and Pleurostylia. Canotia was resolved as the sister group of Acanthothamus within Celastraceae. Perrottetia and Mortonia were resolved as the sister group of the rest of the Celastraceae. Siphonodon was resolved as a derived member of Celastraceae. Maytenus was resolved as three disparate groups, suggesting that this large genus needs to be recircumscribed.

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American Journal of Botany

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