Phylogenetic Studies and Metabolite Analysis of Sticta Species from Colombia and Chile by Ultra-High Performance Liquid Chromatography-High Resolution-Q-Orbitrap-Mass Spectrometry
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Eleven species of lichens of the genus Sticta, ten of which were collected in Colombia (S. pseudosylvatica S. luteocyphellata S. cf. andina S. cf. hypoglabra, S. cordillerana, S. cf. gyalocarpa S. leucoblepharis, S. parahumboldtii S. impressula, S. ocaniensis) and one collected in Chile (S. lineariloba), were analyzed for the first time using hyphenated liquid chromatography with high-resolution mass spectrometry. In the metabolomic analysis, a total of 189 peaks were tentatively detected; the analyses were divided in five (5) groups of compounds comprising lipids, small phenolic compounds, saturated acids, terpenes, and typical phenolic lichen compounds such as depsides, depsidones and anthraquinones. The metabolome profiles of these eleven species are important since some compounds were identified as chemical markers for the fast identification of Sticta lichens for the first time. Finally, the usefulness of chemical compounds in comparison to traditional morphological traits to the study of ancestor–descendant relationships in the genus was assessed. Chemical and morphological consensus trees were not consistent with each other and recovered different relationships between taxa.