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Abstract Detail

Pteridological Section/AFS

Sprunt, Susan V [1], Schneider, Harald [2], Watson, Linda E. [1], Russell, Stephen J. [3], Hickey, R. James [1].

Phylogeography and taxonomy of the widespread resurrection fern species Pleopeltis polypodioides.

Pleopeltis polypodioides is a common epiphytic fern species that occurs in the southern United States and throughout Central America, the Caribbean Basin, tropical South America, with a disjunct subspecies in southern Africa. This species is known for the poikilohydrous strategy, i.e. the re-hydration of leaves, that allows for the colonization of epiphytic habitats despite considerable drought stress. Up to seven subspecies or varieties are recognized within P. polypodioides: polypodioides, michauxiana, acicularis, burchellii, minus, ecklonii, and knoblochianum. Molecular phylogenetics is being used to understand the systematic relationships within P. polypodioides. Six of the seven subspecies were sampled representing a total of 83 collections. DNA sequences of two plastid regions, trnL-trnF region including the trnL intron and the trnL-trnF intergenic spacer, and the psbA-trnH intergenic spacer were generated and analyzed independently, and combined using parsimony. Our preliminary results indicate that P. polypodioides is likely monophyletic and suggests the presence of two lineages: a South American Caribbean Basin group and a Central and North American group. The African subspecies (P. polypodioides subsp. ecklonii) appears to be closely related to the Central American lineage.

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1 - Miami University, Department of Botany, Oxford, Ohio, 45056, USA
2 - Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 5BD, UK
3 - Natural History Museum, Department of Botany, Cromwell road, London, SW7 5BD, United Kingdom

Pleopeltis polypodioides

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: 23
Location: 209/SUB
Date: Monday, July 28th, 2008
Time: 3:15 PM
Number: 23006
Abstract ID:345

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