Marginal/peripheral (MaP) forest populations exist at the edge of species ranges, and may contain unique genetic diversity arising from adaptation to the adverse and unusual in the regions which they inhabit. The effects of climatic and other global changes are likely to be increasingly significant, and will affect forest tree species and their marginal populations. Studying adaptive processes in MaP populations is crucial and of mutual interest for European and non-European countries to understanding the evolution of species, and for the development of forest genetic resources (FGR) conservation, management strategies, and networks to cope with global change. These populations are threatened not only by global warming, but by various other threats arising from human activities. Because of their millennia-long history of adaptation to environmental changes, FGR growing in Europe may prove invaluable for adapting the forestry sector.

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