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Ongoing Research
Dr. James G. Harris

Rediscovery of Braya pilosa
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Ploidy Levels in Braya (n=7)
While the rediscovery of B. pilosa would of itself be interesting botanically and historically, the availability of living plants for study would also be tremendously valuable to our understanding of Braya. The evolution of the genus is intimately tied to hybridization and polyploidy, but that phylogenetic history is obscured by the fact that diploidy has never been reported in Braya.
  2n=28 2n=42 2n=56 2n=70
B. thorild-wulffii X      
B. fernaldii     X  
B. longii     X  
B. glabella     X  
B. humilis X X X X
B. linearis   X    
B. alpina   X    
B. pilosa Unknown.  Perhaps diploid (2n=14).
There is some evidence, however, that B. pilosa may be diploid and, therefore, could have played a critical role in the evolutionary history of Braya. If B. pilosa is indeed diploid, its extremely limited distribution may be linked to its ploidy level.