Asteraceae: cladistics & classification
Using the relatively new technique of cladistics, which analyzes the distribution and evolution of individual taxonomic characteristics among the taxa, the author and his collaborators have reconstructed the phylogeny within the family Asteraceae. Using various cladistic algorithms, "trees" of different kinds are generated, with the taxa at the tips of the branches. In each case, the objective is to construct the most parsimonious tree, the one with the fewest parallelisms or reversals in the evolution of the characters. The result is the most comprehensive elucidation of the evolutionary relationships of the Asteraceae and of the groups within it, and an exhaustive classification of the family. All available information on the phylogeny of the family has here been assembled in one volume; included are more than 50 cladograms and phylogenetic trees, many of them from new and hitherto unpublished cladistic analyses. In addition to introductory chapters on cladistics, classification, morphology, and evolution, the book also includes chapters on each of the sub-families and tribes, with illustrations of morphological details, as well as descriptions of all genera. Several of these chapters were provided by Arne A. Anderberg, Per Ola Karis, Bertil Nordenstam, Johannes Lundberg, and Olof Ryding, from the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm and from the Department of Systematic Botany at Uppsala University, Sweden. More than 1000 references to revisions and other important literature on the family have been included. Specialists in Asteraceae will find the volume to be an indispensable reference for its synthesis and analysis of classification; other plant and animal systematistswill appreciate the volume for its methodology.
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