Range‐wide genomic data synthesis reveals transatlantic vicariance and secondary contact in Atlantic cod

Robert Fairweather, I. Bradbury, Sarah Helyar, Mark de Bruyn, Nina O Therkildsen, Paul Bentzen, Jakob Hemmer-Hansen, Gary R Carvalho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
174 Downloads (Pure)


Recent advances in genetic and genomic analysis have greatly improved our under‐ standing of spatial population structure in marine species. However, studies addressing phylogeographic patterns at oceanic spatial scales remain rare. In Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua), existing range‐wide examinations suggest significant transatlantic divergence, although the fine‐scale contemporary distribution of populations and potential for secondary contact are largely unresolved. Here, we explore transatlantic phylogeography in Atlantic cod using a data‐synthesis approach, integrating multiple genome‐wide single‐nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) datasets representative of different regions to create a single range‐wide dataset containing 1,494 individuals from 54 locations and genotyped at 796 common loci. Our analysis highlights significant transatlantic divergence and supports the hypothesis of westward post‐glacial colonization of Greenland from the East Atlantic. Accordingly, our analysis suggests the presence of transatlantic secondary contact off eastern North America and supports existing perspectives on the phylogeographic history of Atlantic cod with an unprecedented combination of genetic and geographic resolution. Moreover, we demonstrate the utility of integrating distinct SNP databases of high comparability.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12140-12152
JournalEcology and Evolution
Publication statusPublished - 16 Nov 2018


  • Atlantic cod
  • synthesis
  • phylogeography,
  • marine,
  • Gadus morhua,
  • fish

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