Green Plant Phylogeny Research Coordination Group

Summary report of Workshop #4:
Discussion of exemplar taxa and format
for data availability matrices (DAMs)

University of Washington, Seattle,
August 8, 1996

A fuller account of of the workshop is given in the Minutes of this meeting.

[revised 7 January 1997 -- Summary of major findings of the Green Plant Phylogeny Research Coordination Group (GPPRCG) workshop, August 8, 1996, in association with the AIBS meeting, University of Washington, Seattle. Sincere thanks to Dick Olmstead for making the local arrangements.]

Two highest priority items needing to be submitted (for distribution on the web page):

Discussion of format for the DAMs:

Standard headings for columns in the DAM:

Then the actual data availability columns should each indicate a suite of characters that can be gathered at one time by one kind of technology. These are going to have to vary between groups to some extent, but the columns we decided on for bryophytes included:

Then we'll need a number of columns for chemistry and physiology, e.g., methione metabolism, auxin metabolism, etc.

We agreed that the entries in the DAM should be more than +/-. Suggestions were P for published data (with reference in a footnote if you can find it easily and U for unpublished data (with a footnote to whose lab has it), For the morphological columns we talked about using an M for observations on mature structures and D if a developmental study is available. Other codes may occur to you, and that is fine. Footnotes would be appreciated to give details.

Prioritization of taxa:

A priority (1-3) should be assigned to each exemplar following the criteria discussed. Briefly, these were (in descending order of importance): representation of major clades, availability of ultrastructural data (with the argument being that it is easier to catch up with DNA sequence data than the other way around), ease of finding material in all developmental stages, and ease of identification to species.

We decided that three levels of priority should be assigned to help guide data gathering. We agreed on ROUGHLY the following breakdown: 100 priority one taxa; 200 priority two taxa; and 300 priority three taxa. This would give us 600 OTUs to deal with in the best case scenario (way too many for analysis now, but probably feasible in a couple years with some theoretical and computational advances). Just as a rough guide, we talked about a breakdown for priority one exemplars something like:

        angiosperms        18
        other seed plants  10
        ferns & "allies"   20
        mosses              5
        hornworts           2
        liverworts         10
        charophytes         5
        chlorophytes       20
        fossils            30

It was decided not be too strict on scoring only the particular exemplar species chosen. If there are suitable data available for a related species, go ahead and note it in the matrix, with a footnote indicating the situation. We certainly are going to have to accept some compromises where one OTU is a composite of a couple of related species. After all, what's magical about the species level anyway? In any case there are going to be different populations and individuals sampled for different characters.

All DAMs will be drafts, and everyone is free to comment on them, critique the priority level given, add their own knowledge of unpublished data, etc. The main thing for now is to get something up for comment.

View current DAMS here.

Participants at Seattle workshop: Ned Friedman, Pamela Diggle, Kevin Boyle, Karen Renzaglia, Brian Speer, Linda Graham, Martha Cook, Pat Gensel, Kathy Pryer, Alan Smith, Paul Wolfe, Pamela Soltis, Liz Zimmer, Andrew Douglas, Bill Hahn, Chuck Delwiche, Rick McCourt, Ken Karol, Larry Hufford, Jeff Carmichael, Shu-Miaw Chiaw, Sara Hoot, Jim Doyle, Gar Rothwell, Cookie Trivett, Cynthia Morton, Efrain De Luna, Esther Sztein, Bob Kuzoff, Roy Brown, Betty Lemmon, Shirley Tucker, Mike Frohlich, Geeta Bharathan, Dan Nickrent, Peter Crane, Dick Olmstead, Barbara Crandall-Stotler, Ray Stotler, Brent Mishler, Mark Buchheim

[report prepared by Brent Mishler]