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Phylogeny, functional traits and evolution of seed dormancy in Cerrado

Grant number: 17/27100-6
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2018
Effective date (End): October 31, 2018
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Ecology
Principal Investigator:Leonor Patricia Cerdeira Morellato
Grantee:Diego Fernando Escobar Escobar
Supervisor abroad: Rafael Rubio de Casas
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Rio Claro. Rio Claro , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : Universidad de Granada (UGR), Spain  
Associated to the scholarship:14/21430-6 - Dispersion phenology and germination strategies of woody and herbaceous plants in the Brazilian Savanna, BP.DR

Abstract

In seasonal ecosystems, seed germination at the beginning of the rainy season is crucial for plant recruitment as it maximizes the favorable period for establishment, allowing seedlings to better withstand the low water availability during the subsequent dry season. In such ecosystems, the time when seeds germinate is regulated by the relationship between fruiting phenology and seed dormancy. However, the relationship between dormancy classes, seed functional traits and phylogeny are poorly understood. Therefore, we determined dispersal syndrome and season, growth form, seed mass and dormancy classes of 83 species belonging to 26 families of a Neotropical savanna (cerrado) in order to evaluate how the phylogenetic history and seed functional traits have shaped dormancy (presence and classes) in cerrado. Specifically, we intend to: (1) describe the evolution of dispersal syndrome and season, growth form, seed mass and dormancy classes in seeds from cerrado, determining if a phylogenetic signal is present; (2) determine the relative importance of seed functional traits and phylogeny in the evolution of seed dormancy in cerrado. (AU)