Eocene lantern fruits from Gondwanan Patagonia and the early origins of Solanaceae

Peter Daniel Wilf, Mónica R. Carvalho, María A. Gandolfo, N. Rubén Cúneo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The nightshade family Solanaceae holds exceptional economic and cultural importance. The early diversification of Solanaceae is thought to have occurred in South America during its separation from Gondwana, but the family's sparse fossil record provides few insights.We report 52.2-million-year-old lantern fruits from terminal-Gondwanan Patagonia, featuring highly inflated, five-lobed calyces, as a newly identified species of the derived, diverse New World genus Physalis (e.g., groundcherries and tomatillos). The fossils are considerably older than corresponding molecular divergence dates and demonstrate an ancient history for the inflated calyx syndrome. The derived position of these early Eocene fossils shows that Solanaceae were well diversified long before final Gondwanan breakup.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberaag2737
JournalScience
Volume355
Issue number6320
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 6 2017

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Solanaceae
Fruit
Ancient History
Physalis
Solanum
South America
Economics

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General

Cite this

Wilf, Peter Daniel ; Carvalho, Mónica R. ; Gandolfo, María A. ; Cúneo, N. Rubén. / Eocene lantern fruits from Gondwanan Patagonia and the early origins of Solanaceae. In: Science. 2017 ; Vol. 355, No. 6320.
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Eocene lantern fruits from Gondwanan Patagonia and the early origins of Solanaceae. / Wilf, Peter Daniel; Carvalho, Mónica R.; Gandolfo, María A.; Cúneo, N. Rubén.

In: Science, Vol. 355, No. 6320, aag2737, 06.01.2017.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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