Fifty years of Bryology in Mexico

keywords: Amber bryophytes, Mexican flora, phytogeographic elements, recombinant proteins, uses


Background: Mexican botanists were not involved in bryophyte research fifty years ago; only four small floristic contributions were published between 1942-1958.

Questions: What has been learned in the last fifty years? How many bryophytes are there in Mexico? What are the contributions by Mexican scientists?

Studied species: Bryophyte flora.

Study site and dates: Mexico, between 1942-2021.

Methods:  Bibliographic compilations were used to revise the status of bryophyte research in Mexico. Data for the last fifty years cited there and in an updated version of Latmoss served to determine the current knowledge of Mexican bryophytes as contributed by Mexican scientists. No thesis research was considered unless published in a scientific journal.

Results: There are 16 species of Anthocerotophyta, ca. 600 of Marchantiophyta, and 997 Bryophyta in Mexico. At least seven phytogeographic elements are represented: Northern, Meso-American, Caribbean, Southern, Wide distribution, and Endemic. Highlights of Mexican research include the discovery of Hypnodontopsis sp., a Miocene amber fossil from Chiapas, identification of heavy metals deposits in urban mosses in Mexico City and Toluca, determination of chloroplast and mitochondrial genomes of Pseudocrossidium replicatum, and the potential use of recombinant proteins from Physcomitrella patens.

Conclusions: Taxonomic and floristic studies should be continued along with the bryological exploration of the country. Conservation is urgent, but studies of drought tolerance, air pollution, climate change, and potential uses in medicine require support and collaboration from other scientists.


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Author Biography

Claudio Delgadillo-Moya, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Instituto de Biología, Ciudad de México

Departamento de Botánica

Investigador Titular C, T.C.

Fifty years of Bryology in Mexico


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How to Cite
Delgadillo-Moya, C. (2021). Fifty years of Bryology in Mexico. Botanical Sciences, 100(2), 263-273.