Horsetails and ferns are a monophyletic group and the closest living relatives to seed plants

  title={Horsetails and ferns are a monophyletic group and the closest living relatives to seed plants},
  author={Kathleen M Pryer and Harald Schneider and Alan R. Smith and Raymond Cranfill and Paul G. Wolf and Jeffrey S. Hunt and Sedonia D Sipes},
Most of the 470-million-year history of plants on land belongs to bryophytes, pteridophytes and gymnosperms, which eventually yielded to the ecological dominance by angiosperms 90 Myr ago. Our knowledge of angiosperm phylogeny, particularly the branching order of the earliest lineages, has recently been increased by the concurrence of multigene sequence analyses. However, reconstructing relationships for all the main lineages of vascular plants that diverged since the Devonian period has… 

A molecular phylogeny of scaly tree ferns (Cyatheaceae).

This work investigates the phylogenetic relationships of scaly tree ferns based on DNA sequence data from five plastid regions and concludes that indusium shape is homoplastic it does contain useful phylogenetic information that supports some of the larger clades recognised.

Homospory 2002: An Odyssey of Progress in Pteridophyte Genetics and Evolutionary Biology

This review will consider how new discoveries, insights, and hypotheses have modified the authors' perceptions of homosporous pteridophytes and assess the impact that these changes have had on understanding basic aspects of plant genetics.

Chloroplast phylogenomics resolves key relationships in ferns

Chloroplast phylogenomics shows great potential in providing a framework for testing the impact of reticulate evolution in the early evolution of ferns, and has recent parallel advances in the phylogenetics using nuclear data.

Ferns diversified in the shadow of angiosperms

It is shown that polypod ferns (> 80% of living fern species) diversified in the Cretaceous, after angiosperms, suggesting perhaps an ecological opportunistic response to the diversification of angios perms, as angiosPerms came to dominate terrestrial ecosystems.

Phylogeny and evolution of ferns (monilophytes) with a focus on the early leptosporangiate divergences.

The phylogenetic structure of ferns (= monilophytes) is explored here, with a special focus on the early divergences among leptosporangiate lineages. Despite considerable progress in our

Complete plastome sequences of Equisetum arvense and Isoetes flaccida: implications for phylogeny and plastid genome evolution of early land plant lineages

Results from this study demonstrate resolution among the four monilophytes lineages, albeit with moderate support; and posit a clade consisting of Equisetaceae and Psilotaceae that is sister to the "true ferns," including Marattiaceae.

A Nonflowering Land Plant Phylogeny Inferred from Nucleotide Sequences of Seven Chloroplast, Mitochondrial, and Nuclear Genes

Most of the relationships among all major lineages of nonflowering land plants are supported by bootstrap values of 75% or higher, except those among basal monilophyte lineages and among some gymnosperm lineages, probably because of extinctions.

Molecular Phylogeny of Bryophytes and Peculiarities of Their Chloroplast and Mitochondrial DNAs

Two other genomic features make the mitochondrial DNA of plants particularly well suited for deep level phylogenetic analyses: A very low primary sequence drift coinciding with a low degree of homoplasy and the presence of characteristic, positional stable organellar introns, mostly of the group II type.



The earliest angiosperms: evidence from mitochondrial, plastid and nuclear genomes

This study demonstrates that Amboreella, Nymphaeales and Illiciales-Trimeniaceae-Austrobaileya represent the first stage of angiosperm evolution, with Amborella being sister to all other angiosperms, and shows that Gnetales are related to the conifers and are not sister to the angios perms, thus refuting the Anthophyte Hypothesis.

Phylogenetic relationships of land plants using mitochondrial small-subunit rDNA sequences.

This study represents the first use of mitochondrial 19S rDNA for phylogenetic purposes and it appears well-suited for examining intermediate to deep evolutionary relationships among embryophytes.

Seed plant phylogeny inferred from all three plant genomes: monophyly of extant gymnosperms and origin of Gnetales from conifers.

The Gnetales may be viewed as extremely divergent conifers, and the many morphological similarities between angiosperms and G netales arose independently.

Phylogeny of seed plants based on all three genomic compartments: extant gymnosperms are monophyletic and Gnetales' closest relatives are conifers.

The molecular phylogeny strongly conflicts with current interpretations of seed plant morphology, and implies that many similarities between gnetophytes and angiosperms were independently derived, whereas other characters could emerge as synapomorphies for an expanded conifer group including Gnetales.

Phylogenetic relationships of extant ferns based on evidence from morphology and rbcL sequences

The first cladistic analysis of extant ferns based on morphological characters is presented, showing the value of using both molecular and morphological data sets in combination as well as separately, and bootstrap support for the leptosporangiate fern clades is much greater using the combined data set than when either the morphological or the molecular data set is analyzed separately.


  • K. Bremer
  • Environmental Science
    Cladistics : the international journal of the Willi Hennig Society
  • 1985
A cladogram of green plants involving all major extant groups of green algae, bryophytes, pteridophytes and seed plants is presented and a cladistic classification consistent with the cladogram is presented.

Angiosperm phylogeny inferred from multiple genes as a tool for comparative biology

The results of parsimony analyses of DNA sequences of the plastid genes rbcL and atpB and the nuclear 18S rDNA for 560 species of angiosperms and seven non-flowering seed plants are reported and show a well-resolved and well-supported phylogenetic tree for the angios perms for use in comparative biology.

Chloroplast DNA Evidence on the Ancient Evolutionary Split in Vascular Land Plants

Characterization of tracheophyte cpDNAs shows that lycopsids share the gene order with bryophytes, whereas all other vascular plants share the inverted gene order, providing strong support for the fundamental nature of the phylogenetic separation of lyCopsids and marks the ancient evolutionary split in early vascular land plants.

Vegetative and reproductive innovations of early land plants: implications for a unified phylogeny.

Development and structural innovations suggest the three bryophyte groups diverged prior to elaboration of this generation, and phylogenetic analysis of three different data sets is the most comprehensive to date and points to a single phylogenetic solution for the evolution of basal embryophytes.

Phylogenetic analysis of green plant rbcL sequences.

  • J. Manhart
  • Biology
    Molecular phylogenetics and evolution
  • 1994
The results indicate that rbcL sequences may be too divergent to test phylogenetic relationships among major groups of green plants and may be beneficial to include more taxa in subsequent analyses, but there are indications that historical extinctions will prevent adequate sampling of some groups, such as the bryophytes and fern allies.