Sunday, February 19, 2012

Contemplating the first Plantae

In the journal Science this week is a paper that provides the best glimpse yet at what the common ancestor of the Plants and the Algae may have looked like.

Cyanophora paradoxa Genome Elucidates Origin of Photosynthesis in Algae and Plants
There's also a brief editorial commentary:
Contemplating the first Plantae

"The common ancestor of Plantae was an organism with very complex cells and a complex life cycle," Spiegel said. While some members of the super group Plantae may have less complex cells and life cycles, this does not mean they pre-date the common ancestor. "They're simpler because they lost parts, not because they originated that way."

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