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Parmelia sulcata (Ascomycota: Parmeliaceae), a sympatric monophyletic species complex

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 October 2011

Maria del Carmen MOLINA
Departamento de Biología y Geología, ESCET, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Móstoles, E-28933 Madrid, Spain.
Pradeep K. DIVAKAR
Departamento de Biología Vegetal II, Facultad de Farmacia, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Plaza Ramón y Cajal, 28040 Madrid, Spain. Email:
Departamento de Biología y Geología, ESCET, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Móstoles, E-28933 Madrid, Spain.
Departamento de Biología y Geología, ESCET, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Móstoles, E-28933 Madrid, Spain.
Departamento de Biología Vegetal II, Facultad de Farmacia, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Plaza Ramón y Cajal, 28040 Madrid, Spain. Email:
Departamento de Biología Vegetal II, Facultad de Farmacia, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Plaza Ramón y Cajal, 28040 Madrid, Spain. Email:
Departamento de Biología Vegetal II, Facultad de Farmacia, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Plaza Ramón y Cajal, 28040 Madrid, Spain. Email:


Recently, the number of cryptic species known has increased considerably, showing that species diversity has in many cases been underestimated in the past. Parmelia sulcata is a widely distributed species and one of the most common taxa in temperate Europe. The first intra-specific molecular studies on P. sulcata showed an unexpectedly high genetic variability. In the present work, we study the biodiversity of this taxon including specimens from four continents and using three molecular markers (nuITS, nuIGS rDNA, and partial β-tubulin gene). Two monophyletic groups of P. sulcata were encountered; one of these is epitypified as P. sulcata s. str and the other one is segregated as the new cryptic species P. encryptata sp. nov. Issues surrounding the lectotypification of Parmelia sulcata have also been elucidated.

Research Article
Copyright © British Lichen Society 2011

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