Floral Gigantism in Rafflesiaceae

  title={Floral Gigantism in Rafflesiaceae},
  author={Charles C. Davis and Maribeth Latvis and Daniel L Nickrent and Kenneth J. Wurdack and David A. Baum},
  pages={1812 - 1812}
Species of Rafflesiaceae possess the world's largest flowers (up to 1 meter in diameter), yet their precise evolutionary relationships have been elusive, hindering our understanding of the evolution of their extraordinary reproductive morphology. We present results of phylogenetic analyses of mitochondrial, nuclear, and plastid data showing that Rafflesiaceae are derived from within Euphorbiaceae, the spurge family. Most euphorbs produce minute flowers, suggesting that the enormous flowers of… 

Floral structure and development in Rafflesiaceae with emphasis on their exceptional gynoecia.

The development of the shoot apex and gynoecium of Rafflesiaceae are highly unusual and may protect the developing floral shoot as it emerges from within dense host tissue.

Developmental origins of the world’s largest flowers, Rafflesiaceae

Comparative studies of structure, development, and gene-expression patterns used to investigate the homology of Rafflesiaceae floral organs demonstrate that the otherwise similar floral chambers in two Rafflesia and Sapria subclades are constructed very differently, and refute the prevailing hypothesis that similarities between Sapria and Raffleia are ancestral in the family.

Systematics and Floral Evolution in the Plant Genus Garcinia (Clusiaceae)

The phylogenies suggest that all species of Garcinia fall into two major lineages, one of which is characterized by the occurrence of floral organs of uncertain derivation such as central disks, antesepalous lobes, and intrastaminal ring-shaped disks, and the other by their absence.

Natural history, taxonomy, biogeography and genome evolution of the worldwide endoparasite family Apodanthaceae (Cucurbitales)

Using morphological, nuclear, and mitochondrial data, the taxonomy of Apodanthaceae is revised and the 36 names published in the family are allocated to ten biological species in two genera, Apodanthes and Pilostyles.

The evolution of floral gigantism.

Parasitic angiosperms: How often and how many?

This review presents the current state of knowledge on the molecular phylogenetic relationships among all clades of parasitic angiosperms and reveals the closest non-parasitic relatives of holoparasites, plants that exhibit reduced morphologies, increased substitution rates, and frequent horizontal gene transfers, all of which confound phylogenetics.

Holoparasitic Rafflesiaceae possess the most reduced endophytes and yet give rise to the world's largest flowers.

It is concluded that the endophyte probably develops directly from a proembryo, and not from an embryo proper, and the flowering shoot arises directly from the undifferentiated endophytes, which is exceptional within angiosperms and warrants additional investigation.

Advances in the floral structural characterization of the major subclades of Malpighiales, one of the largest orders of flowering plants.

Although the current phylogenetic reconstruction of Malpighiales is much improved compared with earlier versions, it is incomplete, and further focused phylogenetic and morphological studies are needed.

Rafflesia banahaw (Rafflesiaceae), a new species from Luzon, Philippines

Rafflesia banahaw is the seventh endemic species of Rafflesia found in the Philippines and resembles R. baletei, but is different in, amongst other characters, having more confluent wart ornamentations, more numerous and densely packed processes on the disk, and more numerous, slightly immersed anthers.

Endoparasitic plants and fungi show evolutionary convergence across phylogenetic divisions.

It is hypothesized that parasitism of woody plants preselected for the endoparasitic life history, providing parasites a stable host environment and the necessary hydraulics to enable floral gigantism and/or high reproductive output.



Mitochondrial DNA sequences reveal the photosynthetic relatives of Rafflesia, the world's largest flower.

The results indicate that the previous significant difficulties associated with phylogenetic placement of holoparasitic plants may be overcome by using mitochondrial DNA so that a broader understanding of the origins and evolution of parasitism may emerge.

Diversity and classification of flowering plants

The culmination of more than fifty years of research by the foremost living expert on plant classification, Diversity and Classification of Flowering Plants is an important contribution to the field

Explosive Radiation of Malpighiales Supports a Mid‐Cretaceous Origin of Modern Tropical Rain Forests

This case illustrates that dated phylogenies can provide an important new source of evidence bearing on the timing of major environmental changes, which may be especially useful when fossil evidence is limited or controversial.

Do nonasterid holoparasitic flowering plants have plastid genomes?

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Phylogenetic inference in Rafflesiales: the influence of rate heterogeneity and horizontal gene transfer

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Host-to-Parasite Gene Transfer in Flowering Plants: Phylogenetic Evidence from Malpighiales

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Plastid matK is most likely absent in Rafflesiaceae

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