Zheng, Shaolin , Wang, Xin .
Solaranthus: Flower-like Bisexual Reproductive Organs from the Jurassic in China.
A fossil bridging the gap between angiosperms and gymnosperms has been a long-time research target in botany since it will help to decipher the famous “abominable mystery” and to resolve the relationships among seed plants. Despite efforts, there is little advance. Here we report Jurassic bisexual structures of Solaranthus from Inner Mongolia, China. Each bisexual structure includes more than 20 bisexual units, and each bisexual unit comprises a hexagonal receptacle, female parts, foliar accessories, as well as male parts. Numerous isolated female subunits are inserted on the bottom of the receptacle. More than one cycles of foliar accessories of various shapes and male parts are inserted on the receptacle rim. The male parts are in fascicles, either sessile or pedicellate. Monocolpate pollen grains are seen in the pollen sacs of the male parts. The flower-like Bauplan and the Jurassic age of Solaranthus suggest an unrecognized evolutionary route very likely leading to angiosperms. If these fossil plants are taken as angiosperms, they will fundamentally extend the angiosperm history, and require modifications for theories on origin and early evolution of angiosperms. If not, they will stand for an unrecognized class in seed plants that demonstrates an unprecedented close resemblance to angiosperms.
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1 - Shenyang Institute of Geology and Mineral Resources, 1 Huanghebei Avenue, Shenyang, Liaoning, 110034, China
2 - Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, State Key Laboratory of Palaeobiology and Stratigraphy, 39 Beijing Dong Road, Nanjing, Jiangsu, 210008, P R China
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for BSA Sections
Location: Superior A/Cliff Lodge - Level C
Date: Wednesday, July 29th, 2009
Time: 9:15 AM