Evolution of leaf-form in land plants linked to atmospheric CO2 decline in the Late Palaeozoic era

@article{Beerling2001EvolutionOL,
  title={Evolution of leaf-form in land plants linked to atmospheric CO2 decline in the Late Palaeozoic era},
  author={David J. Beerling and Colin P. Osborne and William Gilbert Chaloner},
  journal={Nature},
  year={2001},
  volume={410},
  pages={352-354}
}
The widespread appearance of megaphyll leaves, with their branched veins and planate form, did not occur until the close of the Devonian period at about 360 Myr ago. [] Key Result Here we show, in a series of quantitative analyses using fossil leaf characters and biophysical principles, that the delay was causally linked with a 90% drop in atmospheric pCO2 during the Late Palaeozoic era.

Structure of the Earliest Leaves: Adaptations to High Concentrations of Atmospheric CO2

TLDR
These earliest leaves are characterized by leaf divisions that possess branching venation and a mesophyll of longitudinally elongate cells lacking differentiation into palisade and spongy layers that support the hypothesis that the megaphyll was derived from an axial branching system.

Evolution of developmental potential and the multiple independent origins of leaves in Paleozoic vascular plants

TLDR
Detailed comparison of venation in Paleozoic leaves with that of modern leaves for which developmental mechanisms are known suggests developmental interpretations for the origination and early evolution of leaves.

The origin of herbivory on land: Initial patterns of plant tissue consumption by arthropods

TLDR
The early fossil record of terrestrial arthropod herbivory consists of two pulses, which provide a context for three emerging questions, and provides primary ecological data that remain unaddressed by the body‐fossil record alone.

Selection pressures on stomatal evolution.

  • J. Raven
  • Environmental Science
    The New phytologist
  • 2002
TLDR
Functional considerations suggest that stomata evolved from pores in the epidermis of plant organs which were at least three cell layers thick and had intercellular gas spaces and a cuticle; an endohydric conducting system would not have been necessary for low-growing rhizophytes, especially in early Palaeozoic CO2 -rich atmospheres.

Leaf evolution: gases, genes and geochemistry.

TLDR
The recognition that plant evolution responds to and influences CO(2) over millions of years reveals the existence of an intricate web of vegetation feedbacks regulating the long-term carbon cycle.

BOTANICAL BRIEFING Leaf Evolution: Gases, Genes and Geochemistry

TLDR
The recognition that plant evolution responds to and influences CO2 over millions of years reveals the existence of an intricate web of vegetation feedbacks regulating the long-term carbon cycle.

Beerling — Leaf Evolution : Gases , Genes and Geochemistry 347

Aims This Botanical Briefing reviews how the integration of palaeontology, geochemistry and developmental biology is providing a new mechanistic framework for interpreting the 40to 50-million-year

Biophysical constraints on the origin of leaves inferred from the fossil record.

TLDR
A 25-fold enlargement of leaf blades in two phylogenetically independent clades as atmospheric CO2 levels fell during the late Paleozoic is shown, supporting the relaxation of biophysical constraints on leaf area predicted by theory and point to a significant role for CO2 in plant evolution.
...

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