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Leaf development in Dryopteridaceae species under the morphological approach of Agnes Arber

Grant number: 13/26191-7
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2014
Effective date (End): March 31, 2018
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Botany
Principal Investigator:Gladys Flávia de Albuquerque Melo de Pinna
Grantee:Rafael da Silva Cruz
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):15/15920-3 - Class I KNOX expression in developing leaves of Mickelia scandens (Dryopteridaceae), BE.EP.DR


In recent years, advances in the understanding of leaf development indicate the need of a rescue of Agnes Arber work, which points the leaf as a partial shoot. Ferns record great similarity between leaf development and the development of the whole shoot, and recognized similarities in the apical meristems structure. There is a great organizational versatility of ferns, which, associated with a simpler meristematic structure, can reveal basic principles of plant organogenesis.Dryopteridaceae presents a transition from terrestrial to epiphytic habit, through hemi-epiphyte condition and holds species with simple and compound leaves, passing by a heterophyllous condition. Within the family, there are groups with clear dimorphism between fertile and sterile leaves and species that produce proliferative buds in their leaves, capable of giving rise to a new individual. The great variation in the family makes it a good model for evolutionary study of leaf variation in vascular plants. For this study, we have chosen Elaphoglossum lingua (C. Presl) Brack.; Mickelia scandens (Aubl.) R.C. Moran et al.; Rumohra adiantiformis (G. Forst.) Ching; Megalastrum connexum (Kaulf.) A.R. Sm. & R.C. Moran; Lastreopsis amplissima (C. Presl) Tindale and Polybotrya cylindrica Kaulf. and one species of Lomariopsidaceae: Lomariopsis marginata (Schrad.) Kuh, to be used as external group.Leaves and shoot apexes in different developmental stages will be collected in the field. The material will be subjected to the usual techniques for paraffin embedding, sectioning and staining and preparation for scanning and transmission electronic microscopy. Morphological data will be obtained from observation of individuals in the field, as well as in the collection of the ferns collection at Herbarium SP.Through the study of the growth region (apical meristems and leaf blastozones), we aim to understand how the ontogenetic changes occurred to generate the morphological diversity along the group phylogeny.