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Abstract Detail

Systematics Section/ASPT

Byng, James [1], Snow, Neil [2], Bernardini, Benedetta [1].

Progress on the systematics of Syzygium (Myrtaceae): one of the largest flowering plant genera in the world.

Syzygium Gaertn. is the largest genus in the myrtle family (Myrtaceae) with between 1200 รข€’ 1500 evergreen tree and shrub species distributed throughout the Old World tropics and subtropics. Taxonomic delimitation within and between species is often difficult due to few useful characters and great morphological variation. No global monographic treatment exists and many of the regional treatments that do exist need to be revised because they are often outdated or incomplete. Extensive fieldwork, widespread sampling for molecular analysis and thorough consulting of herbaria material over the last four years has resulted in taxonomic revisions being prepared for the African-Indian Ocean region, a checklist for the Indian subcontinent and phylogenetic and biogeographic analyses. Based on the combined molecular and morphological data 66 species were described from the African and Western Indian Ocean region, including ten new species to science, and 106 were enumerated from the Indian subcontinent. Particular focus was aimed at the widespread continental African Syzygium guineense complex, which in the past consisted of up to eleven subspecies but shown in the molecular analysis does not form a natural group. Consequently, the subspecies were elevated to specific level. Madagascar contained the highest number of new species with five so far described and awaiting publication, whilst another five new species are in the process of being described. The molecular analysis showed clades with a strong geographical basis broadly shown in the African-Indian Ocean species and also the Asian taxa sampled. Progress so far has provided consistent and comprehensive baseline data in the Africa-Indian region and initial plans are being prepared to study the exceptionally species rich Malesian region.  

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1 - Plant Gateway, 5 Talbot Street, Hertford, SG13 7BX, UK
2 - Pittsburg State University, Biology, 1701 S. Brodway, Pittsburg, KS, 66762-7552, USA


Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: 14
Location: Cottonwoods North/Boise Centre
Date: Monday, July 28th, 2014
Time: 5:00 PM
Number: 14014
Abstract ID:328
Candidate for Awards:None

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