Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 262, Issue 1–2, pp 97–101 | Cite as

Exceedingly high chromosome number in Strasburgeriaceae, a monotypic family endemic to New Caledonia

  • K. Oginuma
  • J. Munzinger
  • H. TobeEmail author


We present the first report on the chromosome number of Strasburgeria robusta, which is confined to montane forests of New Caledonia and is the only known species in Strasburgeriaceae. The species has 2n = 500, which is an exceedingly high chromosome number in angiosperms. Within Crossosomatales, molecular evidence has indicated that S. robusta is sister to Ixerba brexioides, which is endemic to New Zealand and is the sole species in Ixerbaceae. Comparisons to the chromosome number of I. brexioides (2n = 50) support a close affinity between the two species because they share the base number x = 25. It is generally accepted that an increase in ploidy is associated with the origin of novel adaptations. A high level of polyploidy (20x with x = 25) may have allowed S. robusta to survive on a fragment of Gondwana by adapting to its ultrabasic substrate.


Chromosome Crossosomatales evolution Strasburgeria Strasburgeriaceae 


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© Springer-Verlag Wien 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Human Life and Environmental ScienceKochi Women's UniversityKochiJapan
  2. 2.Laboratoire de Botanique et d'Ecologie AppliquéesIRDNoumeaNew Caledonia
  3. 3.Department of Botany, Graduate School of ScienceKyoto UniversityKyotoJapan

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