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Polyploidy, herbivory and plant invasions

Titel Englisch Polyploidy, herbivory and plant invasions
Gesuchsteller/in Müller-Schärer Heinz
Nummer 125314
Förderungsinstrument Projektförderung (Abt. I-III)
Forschungseinrichtung Unité d'Ecologie et Evolution Département de Biologie Université de Fribourg
Hochschule Universität Freiburg - FR
Hauptdisziplin Oekologie
Beginn/Ende 01.07.2009 - 30.09.2013
Bewilligter Betrag 468'000.00
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Alle Disziplinen (3)

Disziplin
Oekologie
Umweltforschung
Botanik

Keywords (7)

plant invasions; herbivory; polyploidy; biological control; biogeographic comparison; Centaurea; evolution

Lay Summary (Englisch)

Lead
Lay summary
Biological invasions are recognized as a major component of global change, with profound effects on ecosystem functioning, biodiversity, health and economics. Why human introductions of some species result in increased abundance and competitiveness has turned out to be one of the greatest challenges to ecologists and evolutionary biologists. Aim and HypothesisThe proposed project will be the first one that considers the importance of polyploidy and herbivores for invasions simultaneously. Our leading hypothesis is that herbivore pressure and assemblage will, at least partially, explain the predominance of specific cytotypes both in the native and introduced range.BackgroundCentaurea stoebe L. (syn. C. maculosa Lam., spotted knapweed, Asteraceae) is native to Europe (EU) where it occurs as a diploid (2x) and a tetraploid (4x) cytotype. The species is highly invasive in North America (NA), where only 4x plants have been found so far. Several specialist insect herbivores have been introduced to NA for its biological control, with only partial success so far. StudiesIn a first part, we will conduct a European-wide survey to explore whether the level of herbivory differs between native populations of the two cytotypes, as well as between experimental transplants of the two cytotypes, and if this leads to differential fitness impact. In a second part, we will conduct a series of experiments to analyse interactions between two selected specialist herbivores that have been introduced as biocontrol agents more than 20 years ago, and the three geocytotypes of C. stoebe (EU 2x, EU 4x and NA 4x). In the third part, we test, whether exotic species experience a generally reduced attack rate by native generalists as compared to native species, and polyploids as compared to diploids. We will select five groups of four taxonomically closely related species within the Asteraceae. Each group will contain a diploid and polyploidy species that is native, and a diploid and polyploidy species exotic to Europe. The same plant species will be used both in Europe and North America, but in a different role (native vs. exotic).SignificancePlant invasions offer great natural experiments to investigate rapid ecological and evolutionary change and to gain insight into factors that regulate the distribution and abundance of organisms. The proposed studies should allow us to draw some generalizations on the relative importance of herbivores as a potential key driver or facilitators for the invasion success of polyploid plants. This will also contribute to the further development of potential control measures, especially for biological control using insect herbivores.
Direktlink auf Lay Summary Letzte Aktualisierung: 21.02.2013

Verantw. Gesuchsteller/in und weitere Gesuchstellende

Mitarbeitende

Publikationen

Publikation
Cytotype differences modulate eco-geographical differentiation in the widespread plant Centaurea stoebe
Hahn Min A, Müller-Schärer Heinz (2013), Cytotype differences modulate eco-geographical differentiation in the widespread plant Centaurea stoebe, in Ecology, 94(5), 1005-1014.
Cytotypes of Centaurea stoebe found to differ in root growth using growth pouches
Collins Alexandra R, Thalmann Daniela, Müller‐Schärer Heinz (2013), Cytotypes of Centaurea stoebe found to differ in root growth using growth pouches, in Weed Research, 53(3), 159-163.
Dissecting impact of plant invaders: do invaders behave differently in the new range?
Sun Yan, Collins A. Robin, Schaffner Urs, Müller-Schärer Heinz (2013), Dissecting impact of plant invaders: do invaders behave differently in the new range?, in Ecology, 98(10), 2124-2130.
Effects of soil fungi, disturbance and propagule pressure on exotic plant recruitment and establishment at home and abroad
Maron John L, Waller Lauren P, Hahn Min A, Diaconu Alecu, Pal Robert W, Müller‐Schärer Heinz, Klironomos John N, Callaway Ragan M (2013), Effects of soil fungi, disturbance and propagule pressure on exotic plant recruitment and establishment at home and abroad, in Journal of Ecology, 101(4), 924-932.
Increased seed survival and seedling emergence in a polyploid plant invader
Hahn Min A, Lanz Tabea, Fasel Dominique, Müller-Schärer Heinz (2013), Increased seed survival and seedling emergence in a polyploid plant invader, in American journal of botany, 100(8), 1555-1561.
Allopolyploid origin of highly invasive Centaurea stoebe sl (Asteraceae)
Mráz Patrik, Garcia-Jacas Núria, Gex-Fabry Emilie, Susanna Alfonso, Barres Laia, Müller-Schärer Heinz (2012), Allopolyploid origin of highly invasive Centaurea stoebe sl (Asteraceae), in Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 62(2), 612-623.
Anthropogenic disturbance as a driver of microspatial and microhabitat segregation of cytotypes of Centaurea stoebe and cytotype interactions in secondary contact zones
Mráz Patrik, Španiel Stanislav, Keller Andreas, Bowmann Gillianne, Farkas Alexandre, Šingliarová Barbora, Rohr Rudolf P, Broennimann Olivier, Müller-Schärer Heinz (2012), Anthropogenic disturbance as a driver of microspatial and microhabitat segregation of cytotypes of Centaurea stoebe and cytotype interactions in secondary contact zones, in Annals of botany, 110(3), 615-627.
Increased phenotypic plasticity to climate may have boosted the invasion success of polyploid Centaurea stoebe
Hahn Min A, van Kleunen Mark, Müller-Schärer Heinz (2012), Increased phenotypic plasticity to climate may have boosted the invasion success of polyploid Centaurea stoebe, in PloS one, 7(11), e50284-e50284.
Increased population growth rate in invasive polyploid Centaurea stoebe in a common garden
Hahn Min A, Buckley Yvonne M, Müller‐Schärer Heinz (2012), Increased population growth rate in invasive polyploid Centaurea stoebe in a common garden, in Ecology letters, 15(9), 947-954.
Influence of plant phenostage and ploidy level on oviposition and feeding of two specialist herbivores of spotted knapweed, Centaurea stoebe
Collins Alexandra R, Müller-Schärer Heinz (2012), Influence of plant phenostage and ploidy level on oviposition and feeding of two specialist herbivores of spotted knapweed, Centaurea stoebe, in Biological Control, 60(2), 148-153.
Competition between cytotypes changes across a longitudinal gradient in Centaurea stoebe (Asteraceae)
Collins Alexandra R, Naderi Ruhollah, Mueller-Schaerer Heinz (2011), Competition between cytotypes changes across a longitudinal gradient in Centaurea stoebe (Asteraceae), in American Journal of Botany, 98(12), 1935-1942.
Escape from competition: neighbors reduce Centaurea stoebe performance at home but not away
Callaway Ragan M, Waller Lauren P, Diaconu Alecu, Pal Robert, Collins Alexandra R, Müller-Schärer Heinz, Maron John L (2011), Escape from competition: neighbors reduce Centaurea stoebe performance at home but not away, in Ecology, 92(12), 2208-2213.
Plant invasions, generalist herbivores, and novel defense weapons
Schaffner Urs, Ridenour Wendy M, Wolf Vera C, Bassett Thomas, Müller Caroline, Müller-Schärer Heinz, Sutherland Steve, Lortie Christopher J, Callaway Ragan M (2011), Plant invasions, generalist herbivores, and novel defense weapons, in Ecology, 92(4), 829-835.
Polyploidy and invasion success: trait trade-offs in native and introduced cytotypes of two Asteraceae species
Thébault Aurélie, Gillet François, Müller-Schärer Heinz, Buttler Alexandre (2011), Polyploidy and invasion success: trait trade-offs in native and introduced cytotypes of two Asteraceae species, in Plant Ecology, 212(2), 315-325.
Polyploidy in phenotypic space and invasion context: a morphometric study of Centaurea stoebe sl
Mráz Patrik, Bourchier Robert S, Treier Urs A, Schaffner Urs, Müller-Schärer Heinz (2011), Polyploidy in phenotypic space and invasion context: a morphometric study of Centaurea stoebe sl, in International Journal of Plant Sciences, 172(3), 386-402.
Evidence for a combination of pre‐adapted traits and rapid adaptive change in the invasive plant Centaurea stoebe
Henery Martin L, Bowman Gillianne, Mraz Patrik, Treier Urs A, Gex‐Fabry Emilie, Schaffner Urs, Müller‐Schärer Heinz (2010), Evidence for a combination of pre‐adapted traits and rapid adaptive change in the invasive plant Centaurea stoebe, in Journal of Ecology, 98(4), 800-813.
Plant origin and ploidy influence gene expression and life cycle characteristics in an invasive weed
Broz Amanda K, Manter Daniel K, Bowman Gillianne, Müller-Schärer Heinz, Vivanco Jorge M (2009), Plant origin and ploidy influence gene expression and life cycle characteristics in an invasive weed, in BMC Plant Biology, 9(1), 33-33.
Shift in cytotype frequency and niche space in the invasive plant Centaurea maculosa
Treier Urs A, Broennimann Olivier, Normand Signe, Guisan Antoine, Schaffner Urs, Steinger Thomas, Müller-Schärer Heinz (2009), Shift in cytotype frequency and niche space in the invasive plant Centaurea maculosa, in Ecology, 90(5), 1366-1377.
Contrasting spatio-temporal climatic niche dynamics during the eastern and western invasions of spotted knapweed in North America
Broennimann O Mráz P Petitpierre B Guisan A and Müller-Schärer H., Contrasting spatio-temporal climatic niche dynamics during the eastern and western invasions of spotted knapweed in North America, in Journal of Biogeography.

Zusammenarbeit

Gruppe / Person Land
Formen der Zusammenarbeit
Mark van Kleunen, University of Konstanz Deutschland (Europa)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
Ray Callaway, Univeristy of Montana Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika (Nordamerika)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern
Olivier Broennimann, University of Lausanne Schweiz (Europa)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern
Urs Schaffner; CABI Europe-Switzerland Centre Delémont Schweiz (Europa)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
- Forschungsinfrastrukturen
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern
Yan Sun, University of Fribourg & CABI Europe-Switzerland Centre Delémont Schweiz (Europa)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
Jim Story, Montana State University, Western Ag Research Center, Corvallis, MT Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika (Nordamerika)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern
Antoine Guisan, University of Lausanne Schweiz (Europa)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern
John Maron Univeristy of Montana Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika (Nordamerika)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
- Forschungsinfrastrukturen
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern
Hahn Min Anselm, University of Fribourg Schweiz (Europa)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
Yvonne Buckley, University of Queensland Australien (Ozeanien)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
- Austausch von Mitarbeitern

Wissenschaftliche Veranstaltungen

Aktiver Beitrag

Titel Art des Beitrags Titel des Artikels oder Beitrages Datum Ort Beteiligte Personen
Annual Conference of the North American Invasive Species Management Association Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 28.10.2013 Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Schaffner Urs; Müller-Schärer Heinz;
GfÖ 2013, 43rd Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of Germany, Austria and Switzerland Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 09.09.2013 Potsdam, Deutschland Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Seminar in Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences Einzelvortrag 05.08.2013 Beijing, China Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Seminar in Institute of Botany, Ilia State University Einzelvortrag 09.07.2013 Tbilisi, Georgien Müller-Schärer Heinz;
International Scientific-Practical Conference Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 08.05.2013 Batumi, Georgien Müller-Schärer Heinz; Thalmann Daniela;
SWISSPLANT'13 Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 30.01.2013 Meiringen, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Final Conference of the NCCR Plant Survival in Natural and Agricultural Ecosystems, "Plant Survival: a story of sex, violence and light" Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 23.01.2013 Neuchâtel, Schweiz Schaffner Urs; Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Final Conference of the NCCR Plant Survival in Natural and Agricultural Ecosystems, "Plant Survival: a story of sex, violence and light" Poster 23.01.2013 Neuchâtel, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz; Schaffner Urs;
Final Conference of the NCCR Plant Survival in Natural and Agricultural Ecosystems, "Plant Survival: a story of sex, violence and light" Poster 23.01.2013 University of Neuchâtel, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz; Mraz Patrik;
Seminar in Institute of Botany, Slovak Academy of Sciences Einzelvortrag 16.11.2012 Bratislava, Slowakische Republik (Slowakei) Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Seminar in University of Idaho Einzelvortrag 09.11.2012 Moscow, Idaho, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Schaffner Urs; Müller-Schärer Heinz;
NEOBIOTA 2012-7th European conference on biological invasions Poster 23.09.2012 Pontevedra, Spanien Müller-Schärer Heinz;
NEOBIOTA 2012-7th European Conference on Biological Invasions Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 12.09.2012 Pontevedra, Spanien Schaffner Urs;
Neobiota2012-7th European Conference on Biological Invasions Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 12.09.2012 Pontevedra, Spanien Schaffner Urs; Müller-Schärer Heinz;
NEOBIOTA 2012-7th European Conference on Biological Invasions Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 12.09.2012 Pontevedra, Spanien Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Global Invasions Network Meeting Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 09.09.2012 Pontevedra, Spanien Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Rapid evolution during biological invasions, Fribourg Ecology and Evolution Days 2012 Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 06.09.2012 Uuniversity of Fribourg, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz; Mraz Patrik;
Rapid evolution during biological invasions, Fribourg Ecology and Evolution Days 2012 Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 06.09.2012 University of Fribourg, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz; Schaffner Urs; Mraz Patrik;
Rapid evolution during biological invasions, Fribourg Ecology and Evolution Days 2012 Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 06.09.2012 University of Fribourg, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Sino-Swiss Workshop Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 19.08.2012 Basel, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Seminar in Wuhan botanical garden, Chinese Academy of Science Einzelvortrag 25.06.2012 Wuhan , China Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Seminar in Ilia State University Einzelvortrag 13.06.2012 Tbilisi, Georgien Müller-Schärer Heinz;
6th International Weed Science Congress Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 12.06.2012 Hangzhou, China Müller-Schärer Heinz; Schaffner Urs;
6th International Weed Science Congress Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 12.06.2012 Hangzhou, China Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Annual PhD students meeting 2012 Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 15.05.2012 University of Neuchâtel, Schweiz Schaffner Urs; Müller-Schärer Heinz;
International Conference on Polyploidy, Hybridization and Biodiversity Poster 07.05.2012 Průhonice near Prague, Tschechische Republik Mraz Patrik; Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Norwich University Science Lecture Series. Norwich University Einzelvortrag 27.03.2012 Northfield Vermont, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Müller-Schärer Heinz; Collins Robin;
Biology2012 Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 08.02.2012 Fribourg, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
SEEDS (Symposium of Ecology and Evolution Doctoral Students) Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 24.11.2011 University of Neuchâtel, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
3rd International Symposium on Weeds and Invasive Plants (Agricultural Weeds and Plant Invaders) Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 02.10.2011 Ascona (Monte Verità), Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
3rd International Conference on weeds and invasive plants Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 02.10.2011 Monte Verità, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz; Schaffner Urs;
XIII International Symposium on Biological Control of Weeds Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 11.09.2011 Waikoloa, Big Island Hawai’i, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Müller-Schärer Heinz;
PhD colloquia Einzelvortrag 20.06.2011 Shiraz University, Iran Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Jahresversammlung Agridea Einzelvortrag 06.06.2011 Fribourg, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
CNRS Grenoble Einzelvortrag 05.05.2011 University of Grenoble, Frankreich Collins Robin; Müller-Schärer Heinz;
19. Jahrestagung Schweiz. Gesellschaft für Pflanzenbauwissenschaften: PHENOMICS Einzelvortrag 01.04.2011 Fribourg, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Seminar in Wuhan botanical garden, Chinese Academy of Science Einzelvortrag 24.01.2011 Wuhan, China Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Research seminar of Laboratoire d’Ecologie Alpine Einzelvortrag 01.12.2010 Research seminar of Laboratoire d’Ecologie Alpine, Frankreich Müller-Schärer Heinz; Mraz Patrik;
NCCR Plant Survival review panel meeting Poster 01.06.2010 University of Neuchâtel, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Seminar in Department of Botany, Faculty of Science, Charles University Einzelvortrag 04.05.2010 Prague, Tschechische Republik Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Annual PhD students meeting 2010 Poster 19.04.2010 University of Neuchâtel, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz; Schaffner Urs;
Seminar in Department of Biology of the University of Tbilisi Einzelvortrag 29.03.2010 Tbilisi, Georgien Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Seminar in Department of Botany, Faculty of Biology, Yerevan State University Einzelvortrag 26.03.2010 Armenia, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Müller-Schärer Heinz;
School of Integrative Biology (SIB) seminar series, University of Queensland Einzelvortrag 05.02.2010 Brisbane, Australien Müller-Schärer Heinz; Mraz Patrik; Collins Robin;
Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna di Studi Universitari e di Perfezionamento Einzelvortrag 19.01.2010 Pisa, Italien Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Fribourg Ecology and Evolution Days 2009 & 3ème cycle Mini-Symposium on "Polyploidization, plant fitness and trophic interactions" Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung 07.09.2009 University of Fribourg, Schweiz Müller-Schärer Heinz;
Ecology and Evolution Days & 3ème cycle Symposium on ³Polyploidization, plant fitness and trophic interactions Einzelvortrag 07.09.2009 University of Fribourg, Schweiz Mraz Patrik; Thalmann Daniela; Schaffner Urs; Müller-Schärer Heinz; Collins Robin; Tarbush Elham;


Selber organisiert

Titel Datum Ort
SWISSPLANT'13 30.01.2013 Meiringen , Schweiz
Rapid evolution during biological invasions, DOCTORAL PROGRAM IN ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION and Interuniversity Doctoral Program in Organismal Biology 06.09.2012 University of Fribourg, Schweiz

Veranstaltungen zum Wissenstransfer

Aktiver Beitrag

Titel Art des Beitrags Titel des Artikels oder Beitrages Datum Ort Beteiligte Personen
Annual Meeting of the Entomological Society of America 11.11.2012 Knoxville, Tennessee, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika
2nd NRIPC Conference on Invasive Species in Natural Areas 26.10.2010 Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika
W-2185 Annual Meeting 25.10.2010 W-2185 Annual Meeting, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika


Kommunikation mit der Öffentlichkeit

Kommunikation Titel Medien Ort Jahr
Video/Film Trailer on the new Ambrosia project International 2013
Medienarbeit: Radio, Fernsehen Various interveiws on invasive plants Deutschschweiz Westschweiz International 2009

Auszeichnungen

Titel Jahr
GfOe (Gesellschaft für Oekologie) Dissertationspreis für Min Hahn (beste Dissertation in Oekologie im deutschsprachigen Raum) 2013

Anwendungsorientierte Outputs

Software

Name Jahr


Verbundene Projekte

Nummer Titel Start Förderungsinstrument
166448 Demographic history and recent selection in novel environments: an innovative approach to assess benefits and risks of a potential biological control agent 01.09.2016 Projektförderung (Abt. I-III)
8829 The joint effect of root-herbivores, plant competition and nitrogen supply on resource allocation and population ecology of Centaurea maculosa (Compositae) 01.04.1987 Projektförderung (Abt. I-III)

Abstract

Biological invasions are recognized as a major component of global change, with profound effects on ecosystem functioning, biodiversity, health and economics. Why human introductions of some species result in increased abundance and competitiveness has turned out to be one of the greatest challenges to ecologists and evolutionary biologists. Many hypotheses have been put forward to explain plant invasions, including the role of herbivore escape and polyploidy.The proposed project will be the first one that considers the importance of polyploidy and herbivores for invasions simultaneously. Our leading hypothesis is that herbivore pressure and assemblage will, at least partially, explain the predominance of specific cytotypes both in the native and introduced range.The Centaurea stoebe L. (syn. C. maculosa Lam.) (Asteraceae) system provides an excellent model system to study these interactions, and we take advantage of the large knowledge already available on this plant and its herbivores. Native to Europe (EU) where it occurs as a diploid (2x) and a tetraploid (4x) cytotype, the species is highly invasive in North America (NA), where nearly exclusively only 4x plants have been found. Several specialist insect herbivores have been introduced to NA for its biological control, with only partial success so far. In a first part, we will conduct a European-wide survey to explore whether the level of herbivory differs between native populations of the two cytotypes, as well as between experimental transplants of the two cytotypes, and if this leads to differential fitness impact. In a second part, we will conduct a series of experiments to analyse interactions between two selected specialist herbivores that have been introduced as biocontrol agents more than 20 years ago, and the three geocytotypes of C. stoebe (EU 2x, EU 4x and NA 4x). For this, we will grow a large set of populations from both the native and introduced range, with known genetic background and cytotype. We will study oviposition and feeding preference, insect performance and host impact, as well as the population dynamics of the geocytotypes in the presence and absence of these herbivores. Furthermore, we will test, whether these herbivores have undergone evolutionary changes in host selection and performance in the new range. In the third part, we will investigate into the role of generalist herbivores for plant invasions. Firstly, we will assess feeding preference of generalist herbivores on seedlings of the three geocytoypes of C. stoebe. Secondly, we will test, whether exotic species experience a generally reduced attack rate by native generalists as compared to native species, and polyploids as compared to diploids. We will select five groups of four taxonomically closely related species within the Asteraceae. Each group will contain a diploid and polyploidy species that is native, and a diploid and polyploidy species exotic to Europe. Conducting parallel experiments in Europe and North America and testing the same plant species as in Europe, but in different roles (as natives/exotics) will allow us to further test the hypothesis that evolutionarily naïve generalists do less well on a specific introduced exotic species than generalists that have evolved tolerance against the same plant species in their communities of origin.Plant invasions offer great natural experiments to investigate rapid ecological and evolutionary change and to gain insight into factors that regulate the distribution and abundance of organisms. The proposed studies should allow us to draw some generalizations on the relative importance of herbivores as a potential key driver or facilitators for the invasion success of polyploid plants. By looking at mechanisms underlying the invasion success of some of the most prominent plant invaders in Europe and North America, and by conducting studies in both ranges, we will also contribute to the further development of potential control measures, especially for biological control using insect herbivores.
-