Schizymenium shevockii (Bryaceae), a new species of moss from California, based on morphological and molecular evidence
A new moss species, Schizymenium shevockii, is described from Fresno County, California. Schizylnenium shevockii is distinguished from North American species of Mielichhoferia by a single endostomial peristome, and from Mexican species of Schizymenium by dioicous sexuality, poorly developed endostome segments, and the complete absence of exostome teeth. The new species can also be distinguished from S. pontevedrensis (the only European species of that genus), Mielichhoferia mielichhoferiana, and Mielichhoferia elongata by the presence of 38 and 29 nucleotide (nt) deletions in the ITS1 region of nuclear ribosomal DNA, and a nine nt insertion in the ITS2 region. Four additional insertions and/or deletions distinguish S. shevockii from M. elongata and/or M. mielichhoferiana. Moreover, Mielichhoferia elongata and M. mielichhoferiana share 34 nucleotide substitutions that distinguish them (as a monophyletic group) from S. shevockii and S. pontevedrensis. A survey of California populations using primers designed to take advantage of molecular differences between S. shevockii and morphologically similar but sterile plants of Mielichhoferia elongata revealed plants of S. shevockii at three sites. At one such site, S. shevockii was sympatric with M. elongata. All samples of S. shevockii had identical ITS sequences.
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