Abstract Detail


Root, Connor [1], Cook, Tyson [2], Roy, Tilottama [2].

A Closer Look at the Diversification and Evolution of the Silphium Genus.

Members of the genus Silphium, commonly known as the “Rosinweeds”, are native to the eastern United States, and small parts of Canada, including a wide variety of species native to the midwestern United States. There are four species native to Missouri – S. integrifolium, S. perfoliatum, S. terebinthinaceum, and S. laciniatum. They are usually inhabitants of prairies, fields, glades, and roadsides in the Midwest. Like numerous other prairie species, these plants have long, woody roots that can reach into the earth as deep as 10 feet. They are a very important member of our prairie ecosystem. They interact and help other prairie species in a variety of ways –goldfinches and other small birds, and other wildlife, eat the seeds. The deep, tough roots, like those of many other prairie plants, bind prairie soils. Apart from their ecological importance, Silphium perfoliatum has properties that make it an eligible source for future biofuels, spurring our phylogenetic research of the genus. The main goal of our study was to understand the diversification timings of species within Silphium to provide a more complete evolutionary history of this group. Our preliminary results with two chloroplast loci and one nuclear locus show Silphium members to have started their diversification during the Oligocene period.

1 - 7307 Summit Drive, Saint Joseph, MO, 64507, United States
2 - Missouri Western State University, Biology, 4525 Downs Dr, Saint Joseph, MO, 64507, USA

none specified

Presentation Type: Poster
Number: PMC002
Abstract ID:167
Candidate for Awards:Phytochemical Best Poster Award

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