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Phylogenetic networks can be categorised in various ways. One of the most important dichotomies is the data display vs explicit network distinction.

A data display (or implicit) network is a type of phygenetic network that attempts to display the various, possibly conflicting, phylogenetic signals in the data. No attempt is made to omit statistically insignificant or otherwise unimportant ones. In contrast, an explicit (or evolutionary) network represents a specific hypothesis about the genealogical relationships between the units of study (taxa).

A prime example of a data display network is a NeighborNet. In these networks, parallel edges correspond to splits, and so NeighborNets tend to become quite complicated if there are many of these splits. The user therefore needs to take some care to interpret the network and distinguish what are probably the most important signals, and which are less important ones. An example of an explicit network is the T-Rex method.

See also phylogenetics.


– Morrison, David A. 2011. Introduction to Phylogenetic Networks. Uppsala: RJR Productions. – Available at Accessed 27 October 2015.

In other languages

DE: phylogenetische Netzwerke
FR: réseaux philogénétiques
IT: reti filogenetiche


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