Science Enabled by Specimen Data

Jin, W.-T., Gernandt, D. S., Wehenkel, C., Xia, X.-M., Wei, X.-X., & Wang, X.-Q. (2021). Phylogenomic and ecological analyses reveal the spatiotemporal evolution of global pines. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 118(20), e2022302118. doi:10.1073/pnas.2022302118 https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2022302118

How coniferous forests evolved in the Northern Hemisphere remains largely unknown. Unlike most groups of organisms that generally follow a latitudinal diversity gradient, most conifer species in the Northern Hemisphere are distributed in mountainous areas at middle latitudes. It is of great interest…

Allstädt, F. J., Koutsodendris, A., Appel, E., Rösler, W., Reichgelt, T., Kaboth-Bahr, S., … Pross, J. (2021). Late Pliocene to early Pleistocene climate dynamics in western North America based on a new pollen record from paleo-Lake Idaho. Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments. doi:10.1007/s12549-020-00460-1 https://doi.org/10.1007/s12549-020-00460-1

Marked by the expansion of ice sheets in the high latitudes, the intensification of Northern Hemisphere glaciation across the Plio/Pleistocene transition at ~ 2.7 Ma represents a critical interval of late Neogene climate evolution. To date, the characteristics of climate change in North America duri…

Yi, S., Jun, C.-P., Jo, K., Lee, H., Kim, M.-S., Lee, S. D., … Lim, J. (2020). Asynchronous multi-decadal time-scale series of biotic and abiotic responses to precipitation during the last 1300 years. Scientific Reports, 10(1). doi:10.1038/s41598-020-74994-x https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-74994-x

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Lv, Z., Liu, F., Zhang, Y., Tu, Y., Chen, P., & Peng, L. (2020). Ecologically adaptable Populus simonii is specific for recalcitrance‐reduced lignocellulose and largely‐enhanced enzymatic saccharification among woody plants. GCB Bioenergy. doi:10.1111/gcbb.12764 https://doi.org/10.1111/gcbb.12764

Woody plants provide enormous biomass resource convertible for biofuels and bioproducts, but they are of typical lignified secondary cell walls with strong recalcitrance against biomass degradation. It thus becomes critical to find out the desirable woody plant enabled for efficient biomass enzymati…

Chevalier, M., Chase, B. M., Quick, L. J., Dupont, L. M., & Johnson, T. C. (2020). Temperature change in subtropical southeastern Africa during the past 790,000 yr. Geology. doi:10.1130/g47841.1 https://doi.org/10.1130/G47841.1

Across the glacial-interglacial cycles of the late Pleistocene (~700 k.y.), temperature variability at low latitudes is often considered to have been negligible compared to changes in precipitation. However, a paucity of quantified temperature records makes this difficult to reliably assess. In this…

De Jesús Hernández-Hernández, M., Cruz, J. A., & Castañeda-Posadas, C. (2020). Paleoclimatic and vegetation reconstruction of the miocene southern Mexico using fossil flowers. Journal of South American Earth Sciences, 104, 102827. doi:10.1016/j.jsames.2020.102827 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsames.2020.102827

Concern about the course of the current environmental problems has raised interest in investigating the different scenarios that have taken place in our planet throughout time. To that end, different methodologies have been employed in order to determine the different variables that compose the envi…

Bellot, S., Bayton, R. P., Couvreur, T. L. P., Dodsworth, S., Eiserhardt, W. L., Guignard, M. S., … Baker, W. J. (2020). On the origin of giant seeds: the macroevolution of the double coconut ( Lodoicea maldivica ) and its relatives (Borasseae, Arecaceae). New Phytologist. doi:10.1111/nph.16750 https://doi.org/10.1111/nph.16750

Seed size shapes plant evolution and ecosystems, and may be driven by plant size and architecture, dispersers, habitat and insularity. How these factors influence the evolution of giant seeds is unclear, as are the rate of evolution and the biogeographical consequences of giant seeds. We generated D…

Goodwin, Z. A., Muñoz-Rodríguez, P., Harris, D. J., Wells, T., Wood, J. R. I., Filer, D., & Scotland, R. W. (2020). How long does it take to discover a species? Systematics and Biodiversity, 1–10. doi:10.1080/14772000.2020.1751339 https://doi.org/10.1080/14772000.2020.1751339

The description of a new species is a key step in cataloguing the World’s flora. However, this is only a preliminary stage in a long process of understanding what that species represents. We investigated how long the species discovery process takes by focusing on three key stages: 1, the collection …

Klages, J. P., Salzmann, U., Bickert, T., Hillenbrand, C.-D., Gohl, K., … Dziadek, R. (2020). Temperate rainforests near the South Pole during peak Cretaceous warmth. Nature, 580(7801), 81–86. doi:10.1038/s41586-020-2148-5 https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-020-2148-5

The mid-Cretaceous period was one of the warmest intervals of the past 140 million years1,2,3,4,5, driven by atmospheric carbon dioxide levels of around 1,000 parts per million by volume6. In the near absence of proximal geological records from south of the Antarctic Circle, it is disputed whether p…

Li, M., He, J., Zhao, Z., Lyu, R., Yao, M., Cheng, J., & Xie, L. (2020). Predictive modelling of the distribution of Clematis sect. Fruticella s. str. under climate change reveals a range expansion during the Last Glacial Maximum. PeerJ, 8, e8729. doi:10.7717/peerj.8729 https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.8729

Background The knowledge of distributional dynamics of living organisms is a prerequisite for protecting biodiversity and for the sustainable use of biotic resources. Clematis sect. Fruticella s. str. is a small group of shrubby, yellow-flowered species distributed mainly in arid and semi-arid areas…