Tracing floral adaptations from ecology to molecules

Nat Rev Genet. 2003 Mar;4(3):206-15. doi: 10.1038/nrg1023.


Flowers have long fascinated humans. The scientific study of floral biology unifies many diverse areas of research, ranging from systematics to ecology, and from genetics to molecular biology. Despite this unity, few plant species offer the experimental versatility to encompass all levels of biological investigation in a single system. An exception is the morning glory genus Ipomoea, in which a broad picture of floral evolution, ranging from ecology to molecular biology, is emerging.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acyltransferases / genetics
  • Adaptation, Physiological
  • Biological Evolution
  • DNA Transposable Elements / genetics
  • Ecosystem
  • Flavonoids / biosynthesis
  • Flowers / genetics*
  • Flowers / physiology*
  • Gene Duplication
  • Genes, Plant
  • Genetic Variation
  • Ipomoea / genetics
  • Ipomoea / physiology
  • Multigene Family
  • Mutation
  • Phylogeny


  • DNA Transposable Elements
  • Flavonoids
  • Acyltransferases
  • flavanone synthetase