African Journal of Biotechnology

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Phylogeny of Symphytum L. (Boraginaceae) with special emphasis on Turkish species

BT Hacıoğlu, S Erik


The genus Symphytum L. (Boraginaceae tribe Boraginae) comprises perennial mesophytic species. The distribution area of the genus is mainly Euro-Siberian and Mediterranean regions. The whole genus comprises approximately 40 species, of which Turkey holds the largest number with 18 species. Boissier (1897), Kusnetsov (1910), Bucknall (1913) and Pawlowski (1971) made subgeneric classifications within the genus Procopiania Guşul. distributed in the Aegean archipelago, Southern Greece and Western Anatolia with three species. In 1967, Runemark included Procopiania into Symphytum. However, Pawlowski (1972) did not follow Runemark’s combinations but treated the Greek species as Procopiania. Also, Wickens (1978) in his treatment of Turkish taxa completely synonymised Procopiania with Symphytum. Therefore, to reinvestigate the sectional delimitation, a phylogenetic analysis was conducted using ITS total and trnL-F. Morphological analysis was performed by using cluster analyses. The results indicate monophyly, a single origin of Symphytum including Procopiania. The clades within the genus mostly coincided with sections proposed by former researchers. The proposal for the synonym of subspecies of S. asperum and S. sylvaticum were crosschecked and the species distribution to sections were revised with the help of both phylogenetical and morphological analyses, as well as the experience gathered while collecting live materials.

Key words: Symphytum, phylogeny, morphology, ITS total, trnL-F.
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