Tag: BryophytePage 2 of 3

Gel electrophoresis of Schistidium ITS DNA

  Once the polymerase chain reaction is over, it’s time to Run The Gel; this is make-or-break time, when we find out if our PCR amplification has actually worked….

Copying moss DNA in the molecular lab

After we extracted a plate’s worth (12 columns by 8 rows, or 96 samples) of Schistidium DNA, the next step in our process is to copy a preselected…

DNA identification of Long’s Long’s Marchantia

Many new species are already included in natural history collections around the world, it’s just that nobody has yet got around to examining the material, recognising that it represents something…

This tiny “animal-swallowing” liverwort is spreading rampantly through our forests (and that’s cool!)

Colura calyptrifolia (or to give it its appropriately creepy-sounding common name, the Fingered Cowlwort), is one of our most fascinating UK liverworts. Absolutely tiny (the leaves are about…

Sphaerocarpos, preview to a monograph

The Sphaerocarpales (or “Bottle Liverworts”) form a very distinct group in the complex thalloid liverworts, with ca. 30 species in five genera: originally the group just included Geothallus…

Student projects at RBGE: DNA barcoding of the leafy liverwort genus Herbertus Gray in Europe and a review of the taxonomic status of Herbertus borealis Crundw.

University of Edinburgh/RBGE student David Bell, studying for the Masters degree in the Biodiversity and Taxonomy of Plants; thesis submitted August 2009. Supervisors: Dr David Long and Dr…

Student projects at RBGE: DNA barcoding British liverworts: Lophocolea

University of Edinburgh Biotechnology student Kenneth McKinlay’s 4th year honours project, 2013. Supervisors: Dr David Long, Dr Laura Forrest Kenneth barcoded all six species of British Lophocolea, L….

Schistidium caps an old wooden fence

Recently in Kufstein, the home of Austrian bryologist Wolfgang Hofbauer, the demolition of an attractive old building and clearing of trees and other plants from the land, leaving…

In plain sight – the mosses that grow on British walls

Plant diversity does not have to be far-flung and exotic to be worth studying; even within Scotland, there are unanswered questions about plant distributions. Growing in our towns and…

There’s more to Marchantia than there used to be! An introduction to the new additions

One of the most recognisable groups in the bryophytes, the complex thalloid liverwort genus Marchantia, has just become a bit larger. We have sunk Preissia and Bucegia into…

A mixed message on PCR additives in Aneura

This last week I’ve actually managed to spend a bit of time in the lab, trying to get some gaps filled in a DNA barcoding matrix for simple…

Lost before found: Was there more than one species in Monocarpus?

The complex thalloid liverwort Monocarpus sphaerocarpus has been found on two continents, Australia and Africa, separated by around 8,000 km of mostly ocean. The green plants themselves are…

Delongia, a new moss genus named after David Long

The relative structural simplicity of some groups of mosses can disguise their uniqueness, especially when simplified features have evolved multiple times within the same family from ancestors with…

Rates of change in liverwort genes

Although the exact relationships between the earliest land plant lineages are not yet well resolved, there is consensus that liverworts are one of the most ancient land plant…

Oh blast – there’s more to life than Marchantia polymorpha

One of the earliest plastid genomes to be sequenced, in the late 1980s (Ohyama et al.), was that of Marchantia polymorpha, one of the commonest liverworts around town,…

Scientific progress, continental drift and glaciers: The history of a paper on the complex thalloid liverworts

Rather a while ago, back in 2003, we started working on a phylogeny of the complex thalloid liverworts at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (as a Molecular Phylogenetics…

Hidden diversity in unexpected places – moss growth on modern building surfaces

Back in 2014, staff in the molecular lab and herbarium at RBGE greatly enjoyed a three-week visit from Austrian Dr Wolfgang Hofbauer. With funding from the EU SYNTHESYS…

Finding Monocarpus, in the field

Sadly, although not surprisingly, I was not able to amplify the regions of Monocarpus DNA needed to compare it to other complex thalloid liverworts from a 1950s collection that we had…

Where the Tropics meet the Arctic – Scotland

Some of the most remote and beautiful wilderness landscapes in Scotland are in the extreme north-west, in Sutherland, so-called from the Vikings who regarded it as the south…

Finding Monocarpus, in the herbarium

At the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh we’ve been working on the phylogeny of the complex thalloid liverworts for rather a while now. David Long presented a poster on…