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Turnip Time Travels: Age Estimates in Brassicaceae
- Franzke, Andreas, Koch, Marcus A., Mummenhoff, Klaus
- Trends in plant science 2016 v.21 no.7 pp. 554-561
- Brassicaceae, age determination, biogeography, fossils, phylogeny, turnips
- Results of research in life sciences acquire a deeper meaning if they can also be discussed in temporal contexts of evolution. Despite the importance of the mustard family (Brassicaceae) as a prominent angiosperm model family, a robust, generally accepted hypothesis for a family-wide temporal framework does not yet exist. The main cause for this situation is a poor fossil record of the family. We suggest that the few known fossils require a critical re-evaluation of phylogenetic and temporal assignments as a prerequisite for appropriate molecular dating analyses within the family. In addition, (palaeo)biogeographical calibrations, not explored so far in the family, should be integrated in a synthesis of various dating approaches, with each contributing their specific possibilities and limitations.