Evolution of Sexuality in Amaranths

  • Saubhik Das


The genus Amaranthus is unique in matting behaviour ranging from self-compatibility to obligate out-crossing i.e., from monomorphic reproductive system to dimorphic reproductive system. It shows a wide range of variability in sexuality from gynomonoecy, monoecy to dioecy. Grain amaranths are exclusively monoecious, vegetable amaranths are predominantly monoecious with exception. A new gynomonoecious species Amaranthus parganensis Saubhik Das was identified from lower Gangetic plain of West Bengal that closely resemble A. tricolor. Dioecious species are confined to a small area in North America. Monoecy in amaranths may have evolved from hermaphrodite Chen-Am member. In case of vegetable amaranths genetic modification in female fertility of hermaphrodite population might have resulted in the formation of bisexual member with non functional gynoecium. Later male sterility gene played a role to develop female member. Subsequently, through inbreeding process gynomonoecious member might have originated. Monoecy is a derived condition originated from gynomonoecious condition through optimization of male and female reproduction through different selection processes. Origin of dioecy from monoecy may have evolved through disruptive selection on male and female reproductive allocation, followed by gender specialization ultimately leading to unisexual plants.


Inbreeding Depression Female Fertility Sexual System Dioecious Species Disruptive Selection 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Singapore 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Saubhik Das
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BotanyTaki Government CollegeTakiIndia

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