HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Oily fossils provide clues to the evolution of flowers

Daffodils, tulips, roses and other flowers are so much a part of our daily lives that we take them for granted.

But to evolutionary scientists, the question of how and when flowering plants appeared on Earth has gone unanswered for more than a century.

Mosses were the first plants to emerge on land some 425 million years ago, followed by firs, ginkgoes, conifers and several other varieties.

According to the fossil record, flowering plants abruptly appeared out of nowhere about 130 million years ago.

Where did they come from, and how could they have evolved so suddenly without any transitional fossils linking them to other ancient plant species?

"An abominable mystery" is how nineteenth-century naturalist Charles Darwin referred to the origin of flowering plants, and the puzzle remains as controversial today as ever.

Now a team of Stanford geochemists has entered the debate with evidence that flowers may have evolved 250 million years ago - long before the first pollen grain appeared in the fossil record.

"Our research indicates that the descendants of flowering plants may have originated during the Permian period, between 290 and 245 million years ago," says J. Michael Moldowan, research professor of Geological and Environmental Sciences.

"We based our findings on an organic compound called oleanane, which we found in the fossil record," he adds.

Moldowan and his collaborators, research associate Jeremy Dahl and graduate student David A. Zinniker, will present their findings at the annual meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) in San Diego on April 2, during a symposium titled, "Biogeochemistry of Terrestrial Organic Matter."

Oleanane

Oleanane is produced by many common flowering plants as a defense against insects, fungi and various microbial invaders. But the chemical is absent in other seed plants, such as pines and gingkoes.

Using gas chromatography and mass spectroscopy, Moldowan and his colleagues have
'"/>

Contact: Mark Shwartz
mshwartz@stanford.edu
650-723-9296
Stanford University
1-Apr-2001


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Ghost crab fossils haunt area beaches
2. Scientists debate meaning of 40-million-year-old primate fossils in Nature
3. Dinosaur, crab fossils reveal ecosystem secrets
4. Study of fossils found in arctic shows plants more developed at earlier time
5. Max-Planck doctoral student discovers living fossils
6. New process by Temple grad student can place loose fossils back into the strata or determine fakes
7. UCLA scientists, colleagues substantiate biological origin of earliest fossils
8. New fossils suggest whales and hippos are close kin
9. Digging for genetic fossils: Hutchinson Center researchers solve structure of ancient biological molecule
10. New fossils may be first human ancestors out of Africa, say Science authors
11. Geologists at UNC-CH discover states most spectacular fossils

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:4/14/2016)... Israel , April 14, 2016 ... Authentication and Malware Detection, today announced the appointment of ... assumed the new role. Goldwerger,s leadership appointment ... on the heels of the deployment of its platform ... BioCatch,s behavioral biometric technology, which discerns unique cognitive and ...
(Date:3/23/2016)... Massachusetts , March 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... im Interesse erhöhter Sicherheit Gesichts- und Stimmerkennung ... Xura, Inc. (NASDAQ: MESG ), ... bekannt, dass das Unternehmen mit SpeechPro zusammenarbeitet, ... aus der Finanzdienstleistungsbranche, wird die Möglichkeit angeboten, ...
(Date:3/17/2016)... 17, 2016 ABI Research, the leader ... global biometrics market will reach more than $30 ... from 2015. Consumer electronics, particularly smartphones, continue to ... anticipated to reach two billion shipments by 2021 ... Pavlakis , Research Analyst at ABI Research. "Surveillance ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/18/2016)... YORK , May 18, 2016 ... but it does not mean that there are no opportunities ... Threshold Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: THLD ), Seattle Genetics ... CHMA ), and Ophthotech Corp. (NASDAQ: OPHT ... trading alerts at: http://www.activewallst.com/ ...
(Date:5/18/2016)... Washington, PA (PRWEB) , ... May 18, 2016 ... ... at least 1,200 hospitalizations are a direct result of asthma complications.* Costing more ... challenge across the country. , “For too many, the suffering ...
(Date:5/18/2016)... ... May 18, 2016 , ... Ryan Benton was diagnosed with ... in the late teens to early twenties. DMD is a relatively common progressive genetic ... age of 22, Benton’s condition was critical. He met with the founder of the ...
(Date:5/17/2016)... ... 2016 , ... DryLet, LLC, a biotechnology company providing an ... be showcasing ManureMagic™ at booth V1061 at the World Pork Expo, June 8-10 ... last year and more recently made news as the results were released from ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: