Abstract Detail

Anatomy and Morphology

Munshi, Lamia [1], Christin, Pascal-Antoine [2].

History of leaf anatomical transitions in  Molluginaceae.

C4 photosynthesis is a complex trait, which is composed of multiple anatomical, physiological and biochemical modifications that work together to decrease photorespiration and thereby boost productivity in tropical conditions. Because the effects of C4 emerge when all components are present, its evolutionary origins are intriguing, and the order in which these components were acquired remains uncertain. The Molluginaceae family provides a great system to understand C4 evolution, since it encompasses a variety of photosynthetic types among relatively few taxa. In the current work, the leaf anatomical characteristics of multiple accessions per species representing different photosynthetic types were decomposed into their constituents, and each anatomical trait was mapped on the phylogeny to reconstruct past transitions in leaf anatomy. Our findings showed that some anatomical modifications predate the origins of the C4 physiology, while others happened concomitantly with the physiological innovation. However, variation within C4 species suggests that adaptation of the leaf phenotype continued after the emergence of a C4 trait in isolated populations, contributing to the diversity of realized C4 phenotypes. These findings offer insights into the evolutionary history of leaf characteristics underlying physiological diversification within this family.

1 - University of Sheffield, Animal and plant science, Alfred Denny Building, Sheffield
2 - University of Sheffield, Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, Alfred Denny Building, Sheffield, UK


Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Abstract ID:636
Candidate for Awards:Katherine Esau Award

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