ResearchPad - special-issue:-the-ecology-and-genetics-of-population-differentiation-in-plants Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Comparative genetic and epigenetic diversity in pairs of sympatric, closely related plants with contrasting distribution ranges in south-eastern Iberian mountains]]> Genetic diversity is generally considered the chief determinant of evolutionary change, but epigenetic diversity is now recognized as another layer of heritable variation with potential adaptive consequences. Epigenetic diversity could sometimes (fragmented populations, stressing habitats) alleviate the loss of genetic diversity and provide an ‘evolutionary backup’ mechanism for wild plants. This study compares genetic and epigenetic diversity in seven congeneric species pairs with restricted and widespread distributions in south-eastern Spain. Results suggest that higher epigenetic diversity could alleviate the loss of genetic diversity in some populations of endemic plants, but also other plant features can be essential to understand the relationship between genetic and epigenetic diversities.