A pleurocarpus moss showing
clustered sporophytes on top
of a highly branched gametophore
Yoan Coudert, Neil Bell, Claude Edelin and I have been working together on the developmental basis of branching form diversfication in mosses. Our bayesian character mapping demonstrates a series of innovations giving rise to shape variation in pleurocarpus species, and the results will be published soon in New Phytologist. In combination with predictions made by modelling and developmental genetics from our eLIFE (2015) paper, the results provide a framework for identifying the mechanisms that allowed diverse moss forms to arise during evolution.
Yoan's ATIP-Avenir fellowship in France aims to realise this goal, and his research is likely to reveal fundamental insights into patterning mechanisms in plants.