Written primarily for mid- to upper-level undergraduates, this title the mechanisms of photosynthesis, its role in the evolution of plant-related organisms, from cyanobacteria to flowering plants, and its wider ecological and climatic significance. The primer brings together the latest research to show how the process of photosynthesis has evolved over the last three to four billion years – from its beginnings in bacteria to the various refinements now present in modern land plants. The authors explain how repeated endosymbiotic and gene gain/loss events have led to the evolution of the various algal groups and related non-photosynthetic groups, and how photosynthesis was modified as plants evolved and diversified into different ecological niches around the world.
The role of photosynthesis in the alteration of the geology and biology of the earth, which enabled the colonisation of the land by plants and animals, is also explored. Finally, this title examines the limitations of photosynthesis and the emerging biotechnological improvements that could make this vital process even more attractive as a source of clean energy, food and other industrial products. Photosynthetic Life is available for students and institutions to purchase in a variety of formats, and is supported by online resources.
- 1: Photosynthesis, oxygen and the evolution of life
- 2: Bacterial origins of photosynthesis
- 3: Eukaryotic photosynthesis
- 4: Endosymbiosis: How eukaryotes acquired photosynthesis
- 5: Evolution of the algae
- 6: Evolution of the land plants
- 7: Future prospects for photosynthesis and plant evolution