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Trends Plant Sci. 1999 Jan;4(1):26-30.

Phylogeny of early land plants: insights from genes and genomes.

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Institute of Systematic Botany, University of Z├╝rich, Zollikerstrasse 107, Zurich, Switzerland.


A large body of evidence from molecular systematic studies has confirmed the charophytic origin of land plants, and clarified monophyly of many lineages in charophytes and land plants. These studies have also identified liverworts as the earliest land plants, and the lycopods as the extant sister group to all other vascular plants. Two traditionally defined groups-bryophytes and pteridophytes-are now recognized as early grades of land plant evolution. However, several problems that complicate the use of sequence data in reconstructing plant phylogeny have become apparent; reconstruction of an accurate land plant phylogeny will require analysis of sequences of multiple genes and genomic structural characters of all three genomes.


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