Plant Evolutionary Developmental Biology. The Evolvability of the Phenotype


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  • Presents a novel, unconventional view of plant evolutionary developmental biology, encouraging readers to think afresh about the subject
  • Challenges traditional concepts on which current research is based
  • Brings together information from different research traditions in an integrated way
  • Compared to animals, plants have been largely neglected in evolutionary developmental biology. Mainstream research has focused on developmental genetics, while a rich body of knowledge in comparative morphology is still to be exploited. No integrated account is available. In this volume, Minelli fills this gap using the same approach he gave to animals, revisiting traditional concepts and providing an articulated analysis of genetic and molecular data. Topics covered include leaf complexity and the evolution of flower organs, handedness, branching patterns, flower symmetry and synorganization, and less conventional topics such as fractal patterns of plant organization. Also discussed is the hitherto neglected topic of the evolvability of temporal phenotypes like a plant's annual, biennial or perennial life cycle, flowering time and the timing of abscission of flower organs. This will be informative reading for anyone in the field of plant evolutionary development,

    Table of Contents
    1. Introducing plant evo-devo
    2. The plant phenospace
    3. Tools
    4. Genes and genomes
    5. Shoot and root – meristems and branching
    6. Leaves
    7. Flowers and fruits
    8. Architecture and syntax of the plant body
    9. Pheno-evo-devo
    10. Evolutionary trends
    11. Looking ahead

    Alessandro Minelli, Università degli Studi di Padova, Italy
    Alessandro Minelli, Professor of Zoology at the Università degli Studi di Padova, Italy until 2011, is currently serving as Specialty Chief Editor for evolutionary developmental biology for Frontiers in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. Minelli was previously Vice-President of the European Society for Evolutionary Biology. For several years his research focus was in biological systematics, but in the mid-1990s he moved his interest towards evolutionary developmental biology, the subject of his previous book The Development of Animal Form (Cambridge, 2003). On his retirement, he decided to study plants and write the botanical equivalent to his book on animal evo-devo.

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    228 x 152 mm

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