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Abstract Detail

Pteridological Section/AFS

Pinson, Jerald Bryan [1], Schuettpelz, Eric [2].

Origin of Vittaria appalachiana, the "Appalachian gametophyte".

Fern and lycophyte life cycles are unique within plants in having two completely free-living phases: a generally long-lived sporophyte phase and a typically short-lived, yet fully autonomous, gametophyte phase.  In some fern lineages, however, the gametophyte phase is also long-lived and can occasionally even surpass the sporophyte phase in longevity.  The “Appalachian gametophyte”, Vittaria appalachiana, takes this to the extreme.  Mature sporophytes have never been seen for this species; instead, it seems to exist exclusively as a vegetatively-reproducing gametophyte.  Although V. appalachiana is clearly derived from a group of tropical epiphytes, its origin is not entirely understood.  Previous hypotheses have proposed an allopolyploid origin for the species.  Here, we aim to discriminate between this and other possibilities using a combination of plastid and nuclear markers.  Our results indicate that a hybrid origin is unlikely and that V. appalachiana was instead derived from within the V. graminifolia lineage.

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1 - University Of North Carolina Wilmington, Department Of Biology And Marine Biology, 601 South College Road, Wilmington, NC, 28403-5915, USA
2 - Smithsonian Institution, Department of Botany (MRC 166), National Museum of Natural History, PO Box 37012, Washington, DC, 20013-7012, USA

nuclear marker

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: 7
Location: Pines North/Boise Centre
Date: Monday, July 28th, 2014
Time: 10:30 AM
Number: 7008
Abstract ID:402
Candidate for Awards:Edgar T. Wherry award

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