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Revista de Biología Tropical

On-line version ISSN 0034-7744Print version ISSN 0034-7744


DELICES, Gino et al. Biogeography of tomato Solanum lycopersicum var. cerasiform (Solanaceae) in its center of origin (South America) and domestication (Mexico). Rev. biol. trop [online]. 2019, vol.67, n.4, pp.1023-1036. ISSN 0034-7744.

The tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) is one of the main horticultural crops in the world because of the important economic benefits that its commercialization generates. Even though the species is widely cultivated in the world, it is susceptible to pests, diseases, and environmental stresses due to the loss of its genetic diversity. There is a wild form called S. l. var ceraciforme that is distributed from South America (its center of origin) to Mexico (its area of domestication), specifically on the slope of the Gulf of Mexico in Veracruz. Due to the large genetic diversity of these wild tomatoes, it is important to improve its crop. The objective of this investigation was to identify patterns of environmental diversification of the tomato, infer the processes of adaptation of the populations in the area of domestication with respect to their center of origin and propose measures of conservation and variation of S. l. var. cerasiforme. We generated two ecological niche models (MNE) with Maxent version 3.4.1 (evaluated with AUC and partial-ROC) to determine the suitability of environmental conditions including their respective projections from the domestication center to the area of origin and vice versa. We used eight variables of temperature and precipitation. Additionally, we included tomato records from bibliographical sources and fieldwork. We also used the niche comparison test (equivalency and similarity) proposed by Broennimann et al. (2012) to evaluate the similarity of environmental conditions in both regions. Subsequently, we carried out an analysis of variance followed by a mean comparison test (Tukey, P ≤ 0.05) with all environmental variables measured. The values of AUC (0.93 and 0.80) and partial-ROC (1.86 and 1.71, P = 0.0001) of the MNE showed that they were good predictive models. We observed that, in the center of Mexico, there are environmental conditions similar to those of the center of origin, unlike the slope of the Gulf of Mexico where they are different. The equivalency test showed that the environmental comparison between both regions is less similar than expected by chance (P = 0.003). The similarity test indicated that the existing similarity between both regions can also be obtained by chance (P = 0.683). We also found significant differences in three temperature and precipitation variables. In conclusion, we determined that the center of origin and domestication of S. l. var. cerasiforme has similar environmental characteristics despite the geographic distance; nevertheless, there are geographical zones (the Gulf of Mexico in Veracruz) in the area of domestication with different environmental conditions. Those places have the potential to contain valuable germplasms.

Keywords : distribution; ecological niche modeling; environmental predictors; center of origin; domestication area; comparison of ecological niche.

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