Early-diverging angiosperms are important for studies of the origin and early evolution of the flower. Vialette-Guiraud et al. discuss the potential of the water lily Cabomba (Nymphaeales) as a model basal angiosperm, as it combines simplicity of floral structure, numerous pleisiomorphic angiosperm characters, and practical features that make it amenable to study using a broad range of molecular biological techniques. They also provide protocols for the growth and molecular analysis of Cabomba, a Cabomba flower EST database, and a genome size measurement of C. caroliniana.
There is relatively little information avialable regarding the role of plant growth regulators in the germination of recalcitrant seeds. Pieruzzi et al. determine an increase in the ratio of the polyamines (spermidine + spermine) : putrescine in the embryos of germinating Araucaria angustifolia (gymnosperm) and Ocotea odorifera (angiosperm), which could be used as a marker for germination completion. An unexpected increase of ABA levels was observed in A. angustifolia embryos, which suggests a potential role for this rgeulator in some recalcitrant seeds.