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Abstract Detail


Harrington, Aidan [1], Watkins, James [2].

A spatial perspective on the antheridiogen system in wild populations of Cyathea multiflora.

Antheridiogens are water-soluble hormones produced by maturing fern gametophytes of some species. These gibberellic acid-like derivatives can initiate dark spore germinating and induce younger gametophytes to become male. This latter mechanism is thought to enhance outcrossing in a homosporous system that is prone to gametophytic selfing. Very little is known about how these systems function in the wild, yet a reasonable prediction is that antheridiogen systems results in male clustering around female gametophytes. We examined several populations of gametophytes of the tree fern Cyathea multiflora from Costa Rica. We photographed individual populations and then brought them back to the lab. We then dissected and assessed gametophytes for sex and digitized them onto a coordinate plane. We then performed a series of analyses to investigate clustering and spatial relationships within each population. We discovered evidence for a functional antheridiogen system in the wild, the first report for this in Cyathea multiflora. In some populations, we found evidence for clustering of males around mature female gametophytes: supporting the hypothesis that antheridiogens can structure gametophyte populations in predictable ways. In other populations, clustering was not as apparent and suggests that a variety of variables may impact the wild distribution of gametophytes of this species. Analyses are ongoing.

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1 - Colgate University, Biology, 13 Oak Dr., Biology, Hamilton, NY, 13346, United States
2 - Colgate University, Department Of Biology, 13 Oak Drive, Hamilton, NY, 13346, United States


Presentation Type: Poster
Session: P, Pteridology Posters
Location: Arizona Ballroom/Starr Pass
Date: Monday, July 29th, 2019
Time: 5:30 PM This poster will be presented at 6:15 pm. The Poster Session runs from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm. Posters with odd poster numbers are presented at 5:30 pm, and posters with even poster numbers are presented at 6:15 pm.
Number: PPT004
Abstract ID:825
Candidate for Awards:None

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