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Abstract Detail

Systematics Section

Coleman, Cassandra L. [1], Clark, John L. [1], Boggan, John K. [2], Roalson, Eric [3], Pritchard, Ross A. [1], Skog, Laurence [2], Matos, Jesús [4].

Rediscovery of Phinaea pulchella (Gesneriaceae) in Cuba: a rare and endemic plant species from the West Indies.

Phinaea is a genus in the flowering plant family Gesneriaceae with three widely disjunct species. The three species of Phinaea are known from small populations in Mexico, northern South America, and the West Indies (Cuba & Haiti). Phinaea pulchella is one of the few members of tribe Gloxinieae that occurs naturally in the West Indies, and is the only member of the tribe endemic to that region. It was rediscovered in Cuba during an expedition in 2008 after nearly sixty years since it was last documented. Molecular data from nuclear and chloroplast regions were generated to test the phylogenetic placement of this enigmatic taxon. Although the species is morphologically consistent with placement in Phinaea, molecular results strongly support that Phinaea pulchella does not nest with other Phinaea species and instead is the sister taxon to a clade with Pearcea, Kohleria, and Diastema vexans. If the molecular results are showing us the true phylogeny of this group, then Phinaea is polyphyletic and the following morphological characters of the disjunct Cuban taxon are convergent with those of Phinaea: erect pedicels in fruit, valves fleshy at dehiscence, opening broadly, and sticky seeds adhering to the valves after, nectary annular (or absent), corolla pure white and subrotate with a strongly reduced tube.

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1 - University of Alabama, Department of Biological Sciences, Box 870345, Tuscaloosa, AL, 35487, USA
2 - Smithsonian Institution - National Museum of Natural History, Department of Botany, P.O. Box 37012, Washington, DC, 20013, United States
3 - Washington State University, School of Biological Sciences, Po Box 644236, Pullman, Washington, 99164-4236, USA
4 - Empresa Nacional para la Protección de la Flora Y Fauna, Villa Clara, Cuba


Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for BSA Sections
Session: 32
Location: Rendezvous A/Snowbird Center
Date: Tuesday, July 28th, 2009
Time: 11:15 AM
Number: 32013
Abstract ID:710