Daily Archives: 20th of July 2011

Apomixis is not prevalent in a high-alpine ecosystem

Apomixis is not prevalent in a high-alpine ecosystem
`Apomixis is not prevalent in a high-alpine ecosystem

Apomixis (agamospermy) is expected to provide selective advantages in high alpine environments, where conditions tend to be unfavourable for sexual reproduction of flowering plants. Hörandl et al. use flow cytometric seed screening to look for apomixis in 14 species typical for the glacier regions of the European Alps, covering Asteraceae, Brassicaceae, Ranunculaceae, Polygonaceae, Primulaceae, Rosaceae and Saxifragaceae. Only Potentilla crantzii (Rosaceae) shows pseudogamous apomixis, whilst sexual reproduction is found in the other species. It is hypothesized that shifts to apomixis are related to frequencies of polyploidization rather than to ecological conditions.