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Are Mylia and Trabacellula (Hepaticae) related? Unsuspected links revealed by cell wall morphology, with the transfer of Mylia anomala to a new genus (Leiomylia J.J. Engel & Braggins) of Jungermanniaceae

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Scanning electron micrographs reveal a striking similarity of cell wall characters among Mylia taylorii, M. verrucosa, M. nuda and Trabacellula tumidula. All of these taxa have the presence of irregularly shaped strips and plates of smooth wall material, each separated by grids that interconnect the plates and strips. These species all also share the presence of well-formed perforations positioned over the middle lamella between the walls of adjacent cells. The grids and perforations are discussed and illustrated with SEM images. The studies of the leaf surfaces of Trabacellula and Mylia reveal closer taxonomic affinities of the two genera than heretofore thought, and an alternative classification and a realignment of these genera to reflect this affinity is suggested. Mylia is recognized in an independent family, Myliaceae (Grolle) Schljakov. The study also reveals that Mylia anomala is best retained in Jungermanniaceae, as a new genus, Leiomylia, and placed in its own subfamily within Jungermanniaceae, Leiomylioideae. It is suggested that Trabacellula is appropriately placed in a separate and distinct family, Trabacellulaceae Fulford. Based upon the linkage of surface features and other similarities, the two families are placed in a new suborder, Subord. Myliineae.
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Keywords: HEPATICAE; MYLIA; NEW GENUS; NEW SUBORDER; SCANNING ELECTRON MICROSCOPY; TRABACELLULA

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: The Field Museum, 1400 S. Lake Shore Dr. 60605, Chicago, U.S.A. 2: The University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand

Publication date: 2005-08-01

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