Genome Size and Phenotypic Evolution in Microseris (Asteraceae, Cichorieae)

  • Konrad Bachmann
  • Kenton L. Chambers
  • H. James Price
Part of the Plant Systematics and Evolution book series (SYSTEMATICS, volume 2)


Reduction of the nuclear DNA amount in a constant number of n = 9 chromosomes characterizes the evolutionary genetics of the genus Microseris. Correlated with this reduction are physiological, ecological and morphological changes. The morphological changes are of two kinds: (1) nucleotypic, i.e. changes in the dimensions correlated with DNA amount changes; (2) qualitative, specifically concerning an increase in the degree of developmental canalization with a decrease in genome size. The latter changes are amenable to formal genetic analysis, and two polygenic systems are described in some detail. As far as preliminary estimates indicate, the complexity of these polygenic systems is independent of genome size. They are probabely influenced by genome size via nucleotypic limitations on gene expression.

Key Words

Angiosperms Asteraceae = Compositae Cichorieae Microseris. — Evolutionary genetics genome size developmental canalization polymorphism heterocarpy 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Konrad Bachmann
    • 1
  • Kenton L. Chambers
    • 2
    • 4
  • H. James Price
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Premedical Biology ProgramUniversity of HeidelbergHeidelbergFederal Republic of Germany
  2. 2.CorvallisUSA
  3. 3.College StationUSA
  4. 4.Premedical Biology ProgramUniversity of HeidelbergFederal Republic of Germany

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