Evolution of latex and its constituent defensive chemistry in milkweeds ( Asclepias ) : a phylogenetic test of plant defense escalation

@inproceedings{Agrawal2008EvolutionOL,
  title={Evolution of latex and its constituent defensive chemistry in milkweeds ( Asclepias ) : a phylogenetic test of plant defense escalation},
  author={Anurag A. Agrawal and Marc J. Lajeunesse and Mark Fishbein},
  year={2008}
}
A tremendous diversity of plants exude sticky and toxic latex upon tissue damage, and its production has been widely studied as a defensive adaptation against insect herbivores. Here, we address variation in latex production and its constituent chemical properties (cardenolides and cysteine proteases) in 53 milkweeds [ Asclepias spp. (Apocynaceae)], employing a phylogenetic approach to test macroevolutionary hypotheses of defense evolution. Species were highly variable for all three traits, and… CONTINUE READING

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