Plant Physiology | VOL. 160
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Focus Issue on the Plant Physiology of Global Change: Evolutionary and Ecological Responses to Anthropogenic Climate Change: Update on Anthropogenic Climate Change

Publication Date Dec 1, 2012

Abstract

Strategies that enable species to persist in changing environments have historically been divided into ecological (distributional shifts and phenotypic plasticity) and evolutionary (adaptation and gene flow). However, most species will likely need to rely on a combination of approaches to mitigate extinction risks from ongoing climate change. For example, increased temporal variation in climate could favor genotypes with adaptive plasticity. Furthermore, even species capable of tracking their preferred climate via migration will encounter different abiotic and biotic conditions; plasticity and/or adaptation could facilitate establishment and population growth in new geographic ranges. The relative contributions of adaptation, migration, and plasticity to population persistence in a changing world will likely depend on characteristics such as generation time, mating system, dispersal capacity, the strength and direction of selection, the presence of ecologically relevant genetic variation, the extent of genetic correlations among traits, and the genetic architecture of adaptation. Will adaptation keep pace with rapid climate change? Here, we propose hypotheses based on ecological and evolutionary theory, discuss experimental approaches, and review results from studies that have investigated ecological and evolutionary responses to contemporary climate change. We focus our discussion on plants, but owing to the limited number of publications to date that integrate evolutionary and ecological perspectives, we draw from other ta...

Concepts
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Relative Contributions Of Migration
Rapid Climate Change
Adaptive Plasticity
Extent Of Habitat Degradation
Genetic Architecture Of Adaptation
Climate
Climate Change
Adaptation
Anthropogenic Climate Change
Adaptive

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