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microMORPH 2012 Workshop
Micro-evo-devo: Flower Form and Function
Held at the Arnold Arbroretum of Harvard University
May 11-13, 2012


Abstract of Workshop:

Floral function is intimately related to floral morphology.  Evolutionary transitions among pollinators, mating systems (selfing vs. outcrossing), sexual systems (e.g., hermaphroditism vs. monoecy, dioecy), and fruit dispersal syndromes are associated with changes in morphology and the developmental processes that underlie floral structure.  The role of natural selection in these evolutionary transitions has been the focus of intensive research and there is a rich body of both theoretical and empirical literature on the microevolutionary diversification of floral function.  In contrast, knowledge of the associated morphological and underlying developmental genetic modifications that must be associated with key evolutionary transitions in floral function during population divergence and speciation is surprisingly sparse.  This workshop will bring together experts on the microevolution of pollination syndromes, phylogeneticists with expertise in comparative methodology, and molecular developmental biologists working on underlying causes of differential organ growth (and abortion), timing of floral developmental events, symmetry, and floral and fruit histological and cell biological properties.

Presenting Faculty

“Recent progress in studying the evolution of sex chromosomes in plants”

“Evolution, development and function of specialised petal epidermal morphologies”

“More mutations from sperm, even in plants”

“Nothing in evolution makes sense except in light of biology”

“Spurring diversification in Aquilegia”

“Speciation genes in the genus Petunia”

“Genetic analysis of variation in floral morphology within and among Mimulus species”

* also on the microMORPH Steering Committee

Presenting Students

“A study of competition-driven plant evolution”

“Genetic and phenotypic variation across a latitudinal gradient”

“Symmetry genes and tests of parallelism versus convergence in floral evolution”

“How bees get whacked and why it matters for flower form: mechanical function and floral diversity in Catasetum orchids”

“Investigating mechanisms that drive the association between floral diversity and speciation”

“Epistasis among QTL affecting floral size and development in Mimulus guttatus”

“Evolution and development of flowers of Rafflesiaceae”
Attending microMORPH Steering Committee Members
William (ed) Friedman, Harvard University Arnold Arboretum
Pamela Diggle, University of Colorado at Boulder
Amy Litt, New York Botanical Garden
Jeff Conner, Michigan State University
Neelima Sinha, University of California Davis
Susan Kalisz, University of Pittsburgh
Larry Hufford, Washington State University