Moore, Michael J. Department of Biology, Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio.
- Earliest angiosperm diversification
- Mesangiosperm diversification
- Phylogenomic era
- Links to Primary Literature
- Additional Readings
Reconstructing the actual relationships within the angiosperm Tree of Life (the tree of evolutionary relationships of all flowering plants) provides a necessary framework for addressing questions of evolutionary importance in flowering plants, such as the origin and evolution of the flower and the age of angiosperms. Over the past two decades, our understanding of angiosperm phylogeny has been revolutionized by a shift from traditional morphology-based assessment of relationships (in other words, based on anatomical structures) to the phylogenetic analysis of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) sequence data. This molecular phylogenetic revolution has enabled plant systematists to use DNA sequences from several genes to confidently reconstruct much of the angiosperm Tree of Life. Despite this progress, relationships among many of the most important ancient lineages of angiosperms have proved difficult to resolve with just a few genes.
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