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11 August 2020 Morphology and Affinities of Ampelocissites Seeds (Vitaceae: Ampelopsis Clade) from the Paleogene of Texas, USA
Steven R. Manchester
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Abstract

The type material on which the fossil genus name Ampelocissites was established in 1929 has been reexamined with the aid of X-ray micro-computed tomography (µ-CT) scanning and compared with seeds of extant taxa to assess the relationships of these fossils within the grape family, Vitaceae. The specimens were collected from a sandstone of late Paleocene or early Eocene age. Although originally inferred by Berry to be intermediate in morphology between Ampelocissus and Vitis, the newly revealed details of seed morphology indicate that these seeds represent instead the Ampelopsis clade. Digital cross sections show that the seed coat maintains its thickness over the external surfaces, but diminishes quickly in the ventral infolds. This feature, along with the elliptical chalaza and lack of an apical groove, indicate that Ampelocissites lytlensis Berry probably represents Ampelopsis or Nekemias (rather than Ampelocissus or Vitis) and that the generic name Ampelocissites may be useful for fossil seeds with morphology consistent with the Ampelopsis clade that lack sufficient characters to specify placement within one of these extant genera.

© Copyright 2020 by the American Society of Plant Taxonomists
Steven R. Manchester "Morphology and Affinities of Ampelocissites Seeds (Vitaceae: Ampelopsis Clade) from the Paleogene of Texas, USA," Systematic Botany 45(3), 478-482, (11 August 2020). https://doi.org/10.1600/036364420X15935294613400
Published: 11 August 2020
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