Investigating the Evolution of Plant Form: Conceptual Integration from the Molecular to the Ecological

A MORPH sponsored workshop at the University of Colorado, Boulder December 14th-16th, 2007.

This workshop provided an opportunity for a select group of doctoral students and distinguished investigators in plant evolutionary developmental biology to interact. The goal was to address current methodological and conceptual hurdles associated with the study of the evolution of plant form. In particular, participants focused on the integration of developmental information across molecular, organismic and ecological levels of plant biology. In addition to presentations by the faculty, each student outlined critical issues associated with his/her own evolutionary developmental research for discussion by all participants. The ideas and interactions at the workshop resulted in a publication by several participants in the New Phytologist.

Workshop faculty and their presentation titles

Scott Armbruster - The Adaptive Accuracy of Flowers: Developmental Stability and Integration Meet Pollination Ecology

Spencer Barrett - Morphology and Mating in Sexually Polymorphic Plant Populations

Peter Crane - Paleobotanical Insights on the Development of Plant Form

Pamela Diggle - Positional Variation Among Metamers: a Key to Understanding the Evolution of Whole-Plant Phenotypes

Michael Donoghue - The Evolution of Plant Form in Relation to Genes, Geography, and Diversification with Examples Mainly from the Dipsacales

Peter Endress - Flower Development and Evolution Viewed from a Diversity Perspective

William Friedman (Organizer)

Larry Hufford (Organizer)

Vivian Irish - Petal Development: Variations on a Theme

Amy Litt - Gene Duplication, Diversification, and Redeployment

Michael Purugganan - Microevolution of Plant Developmental Patterns: Probing Variation within Species

Workshop students and their presentation titles

Robert Baker - The Microevolution of Development: Mimulus guttatus shoot architecture

Conny Bartholmes - Roles of Leaf Polarity Genes in the Basal Eudicot Eschscholzia clifornica

Madelaine Bartlett - Evolution of Floral Symmetry in the Petelaoid Monocot Order Zingiberales

Benjamin Blackman - Evolution of Genetic Networks Underlying Plastic Traits: Lessons from Flowering Time

Sara Carlson - Evolution of a Novel Floral Organ in Dipsacaceae: Consequences for dispersal and diversification

Jill Duarte - The Role of Gene Duplication in the Evolution of Flowering Plants

Dior Kelley - The Origin of Derived Unitegmy

Kathryn Larson - Investigating the Evolution fo Plant Form in Extinct Plants: Understanding Bennettitales and their Evolutionary Significance

Jae-Hyeok Lee - Exploring the Origin of Sporophytes in Land Plants; Insight from the Study of Sexual Development in Chlamydomonas

Rachel Meyer - Investigating the Mechanism of Fruit Development and Evolution within Solonaceae

Matt Ogburn - Reconstructing Evolutionary Transitions in Photosynthetic Tissues of Opuntioid Cacti

Natalia Pabon-Mora - Functional Evolution of the AP1/FUL Gene Lineage Outside the Core Eudicots

Alma Pineyro-Nelson - Possible Regulatory Modification in B-gene Expression Underlying the Unique “inside out” Flower Phenotype of Lacondonia schismatica

Mackenzie Taylor - Developmental Evolution of the Progamic Phase: Insights from Nymphaeales

The Agenda

MORPH hosted a three-day, all expenses paid workshop. Faculty and students from around the world gave presentations, discussed critical topics and direction in the field of plant evolution and development, toured the Ramaley Greenhouse, and met for more informal discussions over meals.


An NSF Research Coordination Network (2003-2010)