Abstract Detail

Kaplan Memorial Lecture - Ned Friedman


Angiosperm seeds are a mess!.

With five separate organismal and genetic entities (male gametophyte, female gametophyte, maternal sporophyte, embryo, and endosperm) crammed into every seed – interacting - to produce a viable embryo, it is amazing that flowering plants have made it this far. Indeed, the angiosperm seed is a veritable arena of conflict and cooperation among these five genetically and ontogenetically distinct organisms. How in the world did angiosperms ever end up with mothers and fathers arguing over endosperm-provisioning while sibling endosperms and embryos practice the noble art of altruism? It is a pretty amazing tale of evolutionary history. In this lecture to honor Donald Kaplan (my graduate advisor), I will examine the evolutionary origin (and potential homology) of a genetically biparental embryo-nourishing tissue (endosperm) in the common ancestor of flowering plants, as well as the evolutionary and developmental consequences of the insertion of a paternal genome into the “business” of maternal embryo-nourishing strategy. As it turns out, packing the whole family into a seed can be messy, but also can lead to great things.

Related Links:
Friedman lab website

1 - Harvard University, Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, 1300 Centre Street, Arnold Arboretum, Boston, MA, 02131, USA

Double fertilization
Kin selection
Origin of flowering plants

Presentation Type: Special Presentations
Session: S11, Kaplan Memorial Lecture
Location: Virtual/Virtual
Date: Wednesday, July 29th, 2020
Time: 3:00 PM
Number: S11001
Abstract ID:882
Candidate for Awards:None

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