Daily Archives: 23rd of August 2010

Hopefully I’m running out of wrong ways to issue a press release

Farming a Gray Ghost Organ Pipe Cactus

Farming a Gray Ghost Organ Pipe Cactus. Credit F. Parra.

We have a new press release out, this time on biodiversity and indigenous farming in Mexico. As you can see the photo is stunning, so it’s a bit of a shame that it didn’t go out with the text for some reason. You can download the massive version of the photo here (right-click or cmd-click and ‘Save as…’. I shall have a go at blogging this tonight because there’s some interesting context I had to cut from the press release.

In the spirit of making lemonade from lemons, I shall pretend this was a gimmick to announce the release of a new issue. The paper is part of a Genes in Evolution section in the September issue of Annals of Botany that went online today.

Evolution of mycoheterotrophy from mixotrophic ancestors

Evolution of mycoheterotrophy from mixotrophic ancestors
Evolution of mycoheterotrophy from mixotrophic ancestors

Nutritional changes associated with the evolution of achlorophyllous, mycoheterotrophic plants have not been inferred within a robust phylogenetic framework. Motomura et al. examine variations in heterotrophy in association with the evolution of leaflessness using a chlorophyllous/achlorophyllous species pair in Cymbidium (Orchidaceae) and demonstrate that mycoheterotrophy evolved after the establishment of mixotrophy rather than through direct shifts from autotrophy to mycoheterotrophy. This may be one of the principal patterns in the evolution of mycoheterotrophy.