Alexander R. Schmidt

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The phylum Ascomycota is by far the largest group in the fungal kingdom. Ecologically important mutualistic associations such as mycorrhizae and lichens have evolved in this group, which are regarded as key innovations that supported the evolution of land plants. Only a few attempts have been made to date the origin of Ascomycota lineages by using molecular(More)
Recent studies have provided evidence for pulses in the diversification of angiosperms, ferns, gymnosperms, and mosses as well as various groups of animals during the Cretaceous revolution of terrestrial ecosystems. However, evidence for such pulses has not been reported so far for liverworts. Here we provide new insight into liverwort evolution by(More)
Attempts to identify the mechanisms underlying tinnitus and to develop effective treatments have been frustrating, in part because there are no objective measures of tinnitus. Following Kemp's initial reports of evoked and spontaneous otoacoustic emissions (OAEs), many people hoped that OAEs were an objective correlate of tinnitus. The results of several(More)
BACKGROUND Mammalian cells synthesize morphine and the respective biosynthetic pathway has been elucidated. Human neutrophils release this alkaloid into the media after exposure to morphine precursors. However, the exact role of endogenous morphine in inflammatory processes remains unclear. We postulate that morphine is released during infection and can be(More)
Amber provides an effective medium for conservation of soft-bodied microorganisms, but finds older than 135 million years are very rare and have not so far contained any microbial inclusions. Here we describe 220-million-year-old droplets of amber containing bacteria, fungi, algae and protozoans that are assignable to extant genera. These inclusions provide(More)
Carnivorous fungi dating back to the age of the dinosaurs have been found fossilized in circa-100-million-year-old amber. The fossil fungi used hyphal rings as trapping devices and are preserved together with their prey, small nematodes. The excellent preservation in amber allowed comparison with extant groups: On the basis of the mode of ring formation and(More)
BACKGROUND Lejeunea is a largely epiphytic, subcosmopolitan liverwort genus with a complex taxonomic history. Species circumscriptions and their relationships are subject to controversy; biogeographic history and diversification through time are largely unknown. METHODOLOGY AND RESULTS We employed sequences of two chloroplast regions (trnL-trnF, rbcL) and(More)
In this study, we evaluate the impact of fossil assignments and different models of calibration on divergence time estimates carried out as Bayesian analyses. Estimated ages from preceding studies and liverwort inclusions from Baltic amber are used as constraints on a molecular phylogeny of Cephaloziineae (Jungermanniopsida) obtained from sequences of two(More)
Resin protects wounded trees from microbial infection, but also provides a suitable substrate for the growth of highly specialized fungi. Chaenothecopsis proliferatus is described growing on resin of Cunninghamia lanceolata from Hunan Province, China. The new fungus is compared with extant species and two new fossil specimens from Eocene Baltic and(More)