EVOLUTION OF KEY INNOVATIONS IN LAND PLANTS REVEALED THROUGH THE LENS OF EVODEVO 2
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Proposed Symposium Title: EVOLUTION OF KEY INNOVATIONS IN LAND PLANTS REVEALED THROUGH THE LENS OF EVODEVO 2
Abstract: Plant evo-devo, short for "evolutionary developmental biology," combines evolutionary, molecular and developmental biology to understand the mechanisms controlling how plants develop along their life-cycle and how they evolve over time. Evo-devo research has allowed the study of genes and genetic regulatory networks underlying both, common features in a lineage, and independently acquired traits in distantly related taxa. By comparing the genetic bases of development of these traits, researchers gain insights into how these traits have evolved over time and how they may have responded to the adaptation, diversification, and biological interactions across different ecosystems.
The great challenge of evo-devo research, in a time in which genomic and transcriptomic data are multiplying, is the evaluation of gene expression and function in a comparative manner . Studying the genes and signaling pathways that regulate key developmental stages has been well standardized only for a handful of species. This has hindered broad scale assessment of gene functional evolution in several plant clades. Conversely, the availability of powerful bioinformatic tools, the generation of detailed transcriptomic profiles and targeted expression analyses, and the access to natural variation and peloric forms, or post-transcriptional silencing techniques in non-model species are unveiling unexpected new alternatives to identify the core genes controlling targeted developmental changes. As a result, plant evo-devo has seen a surge of recent accomplishments in recent years due to the inclusion of more plant species across broad phylogenetic scales as well as more comprehensive research questions targeting previously unexplored ontogenetic transformations and their underlying molecular mechanisms.
Overall, the evo-devo contributions presented in this symposium illustrate genes and genetic regulatory networks controlling key features in land plant evolution, such as vascularization, sporangia, seeds, flowers and fruits that have contributed to the diversity and adaptations of a wide range of plant lineages.
Speaker 1: Cristina Ferrandiz
Instituto de Biologia Molecular y Celular de Plantas
Universitat Politècnica de València, Valencia, Spain.
Genetic mechanisms in control of the carpel: one of the most important angiosperm synapomorphies
Speaker 2: Sabine Zachgo
University of Osnabrueck, Germany
Marchantia and other unique bryophytes shed light to the genetic landscape that allowed terrestrialization
Speaker 3: Israel Cunha Neto
Evolution of lateral meristems influencing vascular development, secondary growth and cell fate
Topics (Up to three): Comparative Genomics / Transcriptomics
Topic 2: Phylogenetics and Phylogenomics
Topic 3: Development and Structure
Justification: Due to the large offer of high-quality contributions, we have divided our proposal into a two-slot symposium encompasses three confirmed participants from senior, early career and postdoctoral scientists. In addition, six more potential speakers are either confirmed or contacted. The three confirmed scientists (two women and a man) are from Europe, North America and South America, which ensures a basis for a balanced gender and geographical diversity. We have ensured the study groups include vascular and non-vascular plant lineages.