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Keywords:

  • Bryophyta;
  • chloroplasts;
  • cytoplasmic inheritance;
  • maternal inheritance;
  • mitochondria;
  • Sphagnum

Abstract

The progeny of spontaneous interspecific hybrid sporophytes of Sphagnum were used to analyse the inheritance of cytoplasmic DNA. The analysis showed that only the female parent donated chloroplasts and mitochondria in Sphagnum hybrids. Thus, this is the first study demonstrating maternal cytoplasmic inheritance in a nonvascular land plant. This finding has important implications for phylogenetic reconstructions utilizing chloroplast and mitochondrial DNA sequences as well as for the evolution of cytoplasmic inheritance in relation to the life cycle of land plants.